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DIVERSITY, INCLUSION, EQUITY & ACCESSIBILITY

The Canadian Association of Science Centre’s (CASC) mission is to empower a national network of organizations who champion Science and Innovation by making science approachable, relevant, and accessible. We believe diverse participation and representation are essential and that our networks thrive when we create an inclusive culture where people feel respected and valued for who they are as an individual.

As a national membership association, we are committed to advancing diversity, inclusion, equity and accessibility. We are embarking on a time of reflection, looking inwards, with a thorough organizational assessment of our policies and practices; staff and volunteers; and membership engagement strategies. This is crucial to allow us to become fully inclusive and, in a position, to reduce barriers within the informal science learning and public engagement sector.

We understand that we have work to do. We will work with our communities to mobilize and empower a full spectrum of ideas, perspectives and talent to challenge ourselves and build a framework for learning, accountability and change.

Summary of our progress (2016-present)

ACTIONS TO ADDRESS THE TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION RECOMMENDATIONS

> Established a Diversity Working Committee of CASC Science Centre/Museum Member staff.

        • Added traditional land acknowledgement to CASC website.
        • Instilled common practice of traditional land acknowledgement at every CASC in-person and digital public event.
        • Instilled common practice to incorporate participation and/or contribution of Indigenous peoples and communities within the CASC Conference program.
        • Expanded our social media network and shared content to be inclusive of Indigenous perspectives and audiences.

Hosted a webinar: 

CASC Office Manager obtained training certificates through Indigenous Corporate Training Inc.

        • Working Effectively With Indigenous Peoples (2016)
        • Creating an Indigenous Engagement Plan (2016)
        • How to Negotiate with Indigenous Peoples (2016)
        • Indigenous Consultation & Engagement (2016)
        • Indigenous Employment: Recruitment & Retention (2019)

ADDRESSING GENDER AND SEXUALITY BARRIERS IN STEM

> Implemented a gender-neutral (un-official) writing style to all CASC internal and member French communications.

> Expanded our social media network and content to be inclusive of LGBTQ2+ perspectives and audiences.

> Hosted two webinars:

CONFERENCE PLANNING AND EXECUTION

> Added a Conference Diversity and Inclusion Advisor role to the 2019 Conference Planning Committee.

> Developed tools and guidelines to ensure an inclusive and equitable conference experience.

              • DIEA Conference Checklist
              • Conference Code of Conduct
              • Inclusive registration form (pronouns, accessibility requests, spiritual and religious accommodations)

> Implemented marketing strategies to be inclusive of diverse audiences and voices within our sector.

ADDRESSING SYSTEMIC RACISM AND THE NEED FOR INCLUSIVE SCIENCE ENGAGEMENT

> Released a statement in response to the anti-Black racism associated with police violence in the United States and Canada.

> Shared Anti-racism Resources and addressed our commitment to further educate ourselves and understand our responsibility in educating our members in our June 19, 2020, Newsletter.

> Expanded our social media network to be inclusive of diverse audiences and amplified underserved voices within our sector. (related link)

BUILDING A FRAMEWORK FOR LEARNING, ACCOUNTABILITY AND CHANGE

> Conducted a survey in October 2020 to our members to better understand where they are in their own personal DIEA learning journey, if they’ve received corporate DIEA training, and how our members perceive CASC in terms of being an inclusive organization.

> Hosted a DIEA Member Consultation session on October 29, 2020where our goals were to listen, gather feedback, and generate ideas in terms of better understanding how CASC can support our members - those facing systemic barriers and those working to break those barriers.

Thank you to all participants. We’ve summarized the results from both these activities here. This information and feedback is critical as we work towards a Full DIEA Framework for learning, accountability and change.

NEXT STEPS FOR 2021: 

> CASC Office Manager to begin course with Centennial College to obtain Leadership and Inclusion Certificate.

> Release a Call  for expressions of interest to become members of the CASC DIEA Advisory Board. 

> Launch a DIEA Community of Practice (CoP) for CASC Members.



Canadian Association of Science Centres

100 Ramsey Lake Road 

Sudbury, ON. P3E 5S9

info@casc-accs.com

The CASC office is situated in Robinson Huron Treaty territory and the traditional territory of the Atikameksheng Anishnawbek. We pay respect to their traditions, ways of knowing and acknowledge their many contributions to the innovations in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Clearly and overtly this gratitude must be demonstrated in our collective commitment to truth and reconciliation, by working to transform existing relationships, with open dialogue, mutual understanding and respectful collaborations

©2021 Canadian Association of Science Centres