A Commitment from the School of Creative and Performing Arts on Anti-Racism

by the SCPA Executive Committee

The School of Creative and Performing Arts at the University of Calgary stands in solidarity with our Black, Indigenous and People of Colour (BIPOC) colleagues within our faculty, staff, alumni, students and families; with BIPOC creators and scholars around the globe; with BIPOC individuals and their communities within and beyond Calgary; and with all people calling out for an end to anti-BIPOC racism, discrimination, and brutality.

We also know that this is not nearly enough. We acknowledge that as individuals and as a School we are the direct and indirect beneficiaries of past and present injustice, and of systems we have both inherited and sustained. We understand that expressions of solidarity are insufficient without specific and concrete action, both short-term and long-term, towards actual redress, reconciliation, and equitable opportunity.

Among the most immediate and important forms of action are self-reflection, consultation, listening, learning and unlearning. But these processes can only ever be the beginning of an informed, ongoing, evolving, and unfaltering commitment to be agents of change.

We’re examining all our activities and exploring a wide range of necessary, practical change in relation to curriculum, artistic programming, auditions processes, and academic hiring priorities, among many other considerations. We recognize that there is urgency in this process; we also recognize that without careful, thorough consultation, this urgency can’t be productively served.

Over the coming weeks and months, we’ll be seeking guidance from local and national BIPOC perspectives, as we also begin immediate, concrete initiatives. We will share details of this process with our multiple communities—both what we learn and how we apply that learning—as we work towards a safer, fairer, more inclusive, and thus richer and more robust approach to performing arts education.

SCPA Executive Committee
12 June 2020