Eq·ui·ty – /ˈekwədē/: the quality of being fair and impartial. Equity of treatment.
Equity work IS social justice work. We often think of what we need to be successful and happy in the workplace – and that’s important. Equity challenges us to go deeper than just thinking about ourselves.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) work is social justice work. We often think of what we need in order to be successful and happy in the workplace, which is important. However, considering equity challenges us to go deeper than just thinking about ourselves.
There’s a cartoon that circulates across DEI training and workshops globally, which highlights the difference between equality and equity.
Equality means that everyone receives the exact same resources (opportunities) and treatment. Equity means that you receive resources based on what you need. Then, reality sets in and we realize that “the haves” have WAY more than they need, while “the have-nots” have far too little.
Equitable thinking starts with YOU. Think of something as simple as your family. As children develop and grow up, we understand they can’t do everything themselves. We serve them according to their needs and fill in the gaps where they cannot for themselves. And when we may not have the tools to help them, we find professionals who can – teachers, doctors, lawyers, etc…
We’re all in this together.
We have the opportunity to provide support directly or to find other support systems when we lack the skills to do so ourselves. Where can we find support for our colleagues in a way that shows that we will pour out of our cup to fill another person’s cup?
Equity starts with understanding justice. Some of us have more than we need. Let’s acknowledge that.
Pause, and take a second to look out for one another.
If you can do this in and for your family, then you can do this in your world.