The Canadian Worker Co-op Federation (CWCF) stands in solidarity with Black, Indigenous and other people of colour (BIPOC) in the fight against systemic racism and injustice.
Racial Justice at CWCF is guided by a Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (JEDI) Committee, and includes the following initiatives:
- JEDI Action Plan
- Two dedicated Board seats for BIPOC Advisors
- Two new funding streams for racialized individuals and organizations in the Canadian worker co-op sector
- JEDI ‘Social Acquisitions’ co-op conversion project, funded by the Investment Readiness Program
CWCF’s JEDI Committee was established in 2021 with the purpose of encouraging racial justice, equity, diversity and inclusion within CWCF, the Canadian worker co-op community, and individual worker co-ops.
The JEDI Committee supports CWCF in building a vibrant, growing worker co-operative sector in Canada which reflects the racial diversity that is found within its borders.
The Committee is made up of at least five (5) individuals, including CWCF directors, staff, and members. The Committee seeks to include those with particular insights into the Objectives.
JEDI Committee Objectives
- Lead CWCF in increasing understanding of how we can build racial equity in the worker co-op movement.
- Develop an Action Plan which the Committee would then guide CWCF in implementing.
- Work to make CWCF more racially just and diverse.
- Strive to build understanding of and address racism in each of ourselves.
- Encourage and support worker co-ops to become more racially just and diverse, within their own staff, and in how they engage with the community.
- Develop and share tools, training, and a process which will assist worker co-ops to become more racially just and diverse.
- Encourage and support the development of new worker co-ops led by BIPOC.
- Encourage more voices and participation around the leadership of the Committee’s work.
JEDI Action Plan
CWCF’s official JEDI action plan serves as an actionable strategy to align CWCF’s organizational activities with the Objectives of the JEDI Committee. It was drafted by the JEDI Committee in the summer of 2021, and approved by the CWCF Board in September 2021.
These programs were first launched in Fall 2022, as part of CWCF’s JEDI Action Plan.
BIPOC Training Bursary
This fund prioritizes individuals who identify as Black, Indigenous or other People of Colour (BIPOC) who require financial assistance to pursue training in either co-op management or development.
Bursaries are to be used to offset program fees for the CWCF Worker Co-op Academy, the CoopZone Co-op Developer training programs, or other professional development and training opportunities in the Canadian co-op sector (upon approval).
Racial Justice Project Grants
This granting pool is allocated to projects led by individuals who are Black, Indigenous or other People of Colour (BIPOC), or by groups which are majority BIPOC.
Projects must support racial justice in the worker co-op sector in Canada via promotion, development and/or education initiatives.
BIPOC Board Advisors
The CWCF Board of Directors currently reserves two seats for racialized Board Advisors.
1. Juliet ‘Kego Ume-Onyido: Black Women’s Professional Worker Co-op, Toronto
2. Nasreen Omar: Multi-Cultural Health Brokers Co-op, Edmonton