B.C. Anti-Racism Data Act advances racial equity for Indigenous Peoples, racialized communities

BC Tackling Systemic Racism. Image credit Twitter @melaniejmark

Vancouver/CMEDIA: The release of 12 priorities for anti-racism research, and access to government programs enables the Province of British Columbia to improve services for Indigenous Peoples and racialized communities, said a news release.

Of Seven research priorities put forward by the provincial Anti-Racism Data Committee, Indigenous Peoples recommended three research priorities and two priorities that set out how the Province should approach this research.

 “These research priorities will keep us focused on the areas that matter most to Indigenous Peoples and racialized communities, while we continue to take action to eliminate systemic racism in all our programs and services,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Citizens’ Services.

Coming into effect in June 2022, the Anti-Racism Data Act (ARDA) advances racial equity by enabling the safe collection and use of personal information for the purposes of identifying and eliminating systemic racism. 

As a prerequisite of ARDA, establishing and publishing research priorities every two years by the Province and annually releasing statistics or other information related to systemic racism and racial equity. 

The implementation of ARDA aims to continue collaboration on data initiatives under the act with research priorities and information releases to be done to increase trust, transparency and accountability with Indigenous Peoples and racialized communities, while respecting different cultures and minimizing harms

“The Anti-Racism Data Committee has built a foundation of trust, a climate of collaboration…we work toward racial equity…to choose areas of focus as there are no ‘low’ priorities in this work. These research priorities will lead to insights that can be translated into tangible actions and change that should be felt by racialized people across B.C,” said June Francis, chair, Anti-Racism Data Committee.

Along with the research priorities, two other documents were released by the Province which included, the first-year progress report outlining the work done under ARDA over the past year, and information about important milestones such as the creation and function of the Anti-Racism Data Committee and details about consultation and co-operation with Indigenous Peoples.

The Guide on Using Categorical Race and Ethnicity Variables supports anti-racism research and summarizes a best practices checklist to ensure data about race is used appropriately and includes nine recommendations with examples, case studies and a self-assessment.

#BC; #IndigenousPeople; #racializedcommunities; #AntiRacismDataAct