Niagara Region confirms membership of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Committee
Regional Council recently took a step toward fostering a more diverse and welcoming community, appointing two regional councillors and eight community members to its new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Committee (DEIAC). They will be joined by representatives from the Women’s Advisory Committee and the Accessibility Advisory Committee.
A special focus was placed on ensuring representation from as many diverse populations as possible throughout the recruitment process. The members of the new committee include:
- Cindilee Ecker-Flagg
- Brianna Irvine
- Eldean Ivri
- Ken Kawall
- Rene Nand
- Ather Shabbar
- Emily Spanton
- Yuexin Wang
- Sabrina Hill, representative from the Women’s Advisory Committee
- Liz Hay, representative from the Accessibility Advisory Committee
- Regional Councillor George Darte
- Regional Councillor Laura Ip
The committee will play an important role in carrying out Regional Council’s commitment to making Niagara a more diverse and welcoming community. Members will work with Regional and municipal staff and the Niagara community to provide Regional Council with recommendations to address bias, racism, and discrimination, and promote understanding and inclusion.
In September 2020, all 13 municipalities in Niagara jointly signed on to become members of the Coalition of Inclusive Municipalities, a network that brings together municipalities that want to improve their policies against racism, discrimination, exclusion and intolerance. As part of that commitment, the DEIAC will be instrumental in creating a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan to shape Niagara’s path forward in combatting racism and other forms of discrimination, and creating a more welcoming community.
The Committee is expected to hold its inaugural meeting in June 2021. The DEIAC is the first of three new Advisory Committees the Region will establish in 2021. An Anti-Racism Advisory Committee will focus on reducing discrimination and improving equity, while a second committee will support improving access and inclusion for two spirited, lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual, and related (2SLGBTQQIA+) community members. These two committees are expected to launch later in 2021.
"The events of the past year has shown us that much work remains to address the negative impacts of bias and discrimination that exist within our society. I am pleased to see such a diverse, talented and energetic group of individuals on this committee, and I am confident that their collaborative work will go a long way toward making Niagara an open and welcoming community for everyone."
~ Regional Chair Jim Bradley
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