Inclusion

As an organization we believe it is our responsibility to hold ourselves accountable in the important work of inclusion. We realize that this work is new to some so we have drafted an Inclusion Basics Document as a way for anyone to begin the process of becoming inclusive from the inside out.

Before you read this document take a moment to take the EdChange Equity and Diversity Quiz here.

Additionally, we are adding a page to the website where our members are welcome to "fly their flag" and represent through an image their unique individual and/or group identity. 

See our members flags here

If there is a symbol that is meaningful to you and represents your identity please send it to futuremidwives@gmail.com, in PDF form, and we will add it to the page.

Inclusion Basics A beginning point.
This is open for personal use and or training.
  • Begin by assessing your own personal privilege. Look honestly at yourself and your circumstance. This may be a process and you may recognize new things as time goes on. You will not be able to recognize the exclusion of others until you are able to understand your own privilege.
  • Be willing to accept that no matter your experience, not everyone is treated the same when they walk into a room/hospital/store/organization.
  • Be willing to sit with uncomfortable situations where you don’t know the unwritten rules. Quiet alertness is the best stance in these situations.
  • Recognize that something that may seem minor to you may be important to someone else.
  • Be willing to examine your own practices, choices and attitudes that reflect a bias.
  • Learn to recognize your bias and be open about it.
  • Respect that while you may understand the basics of someone’s cultural or religious practices there are many layers which take many years to understand on an intimate level. Speak to your own experiences only.
  • Approach each person, even those you know well, with an attitude of openness and willingness to observe their practice without needing to hear an explanation.  Don’t assume you know why they do something or how they feel about something.  You may be surprised what even your closest friends will intimate when you make this a practice.
  • When they do intimate something, PAUSE.  Don’t dismiss it or judge it.
  • Trust that when you are open and willing to observe without judgement, the reasons behind someone’s practice, choice or attitude will reveal themselves to you.
  • After you have built a relationship based on trust, openness, and willingness to learn their perspective, it may be appropriate to ask your friend to educate you on their own experience, choice or perspective. The best way to do this may be to ask simple open ended questions such as: How can I be respectful of this practice/choice?  or, I noticed that you....would it be respectful if I...?
  • While at first it may seem like a good idea to ask a lot of questions, at times it is better to observe without judgement.
  • Take the time to notice the unique perspectives, choices and practices of another person without trying to understand them.
  • Most marginalized persons are not going to come out and say, “Hey, this behavior is making me truly uncomfortable.”  They are not a part of the dominant culture in some way, so it is our job to adjust our attitudes, behaviours, and policies to make our spaces safe for all.  This is a process and takes time.  It may be uncomfortable.
  • Rest assured that the practice of openness and sensitivity will bring more awareness to your own practices, attitudes and choices as well.
  • As an organization, the FMA chooses to declare boldly that ours is safe space for all.  One of the ways we choose to do this by displaying symbols which reflect the diversity of our membership. If you would like us to display a symbol that reflects your identity please send us a pdf that is available for open use.