This post is the second in a series of blog posts written by the SSDP Career Services Diversity and Inclusion Intern, Jan Farias, for the Fall 2016 semester. The purpose of this internship was to analyze the SSDP Career Services Program and identify concrete ways that our organization can better serve marginalized communities. The War on Drugs affects a large amount of people in the United States, and because of that, Students for Sensible Drug Policy strives to be a multi-cultural organization with diverse perspectives. About 23% of SSDP chapter leaders identify as people of color, according to data gathered by SSDP’s Diversity Awareness Reflection and Education (DARE) committee in 2016. As a majority white organization, what can we do to combat racial bias in policy and within our chapters? Becoming a more equitable organization requires individuals to confront their own implicit bias and privilege. Identifying as cisgender, male, white, able bodied, neurotypical, and/or straight can allow us to maneuver in systems more easily than others. People can feel confused, angry, or guilty for being privileged. It can influence the way we take up space and treat others. Although it may be uncomfortable at first, uncovering our prejudices will help us grow as activists and create a more open and honest community. Below are some practices you can adopt to become a better ally in SSDP.
Listen, listen, listen
Rephrase the question