The hashtag #CharitySoWhite was trending on Twitter today (Tuesday 20 August) as people in the sector shared their experiences of racism.
By 5pm, there had been well over 2,000 tweets, with many of them liked and retweeted multiple times over, and attracting numerous comments of shared experiences and support.
The campaign calls for urgent action to tackle racism in the charity sector, and was started by Fatima Iftikhar, after she uncovered racist training materials from Citizens Advice, which it has since apologised for.
— Fatima (@IftikharFatima) August 9, 2019
Iftikhar asked people to share their experiences via Twitter:
The Citizens Advice scandal is not a one-off incident.
You can make change happen.
— Fatima (@IftikharFatima) August 19, 2019
Many did, including:
At a charity event…
Senior charity leader who I’ve only met twice:
“We are off to the pub but I assume you don’t drink, but of course you’re welcome to join us”
“Why do you assume that?”
“Sorry, I just thought cos of your religion”
“Yeh, I’m not Muslim.”
— Darshan Sanghrajka (@chiefchimpanzee) August 20, 2019
When I was promoted to a senior management position, I was offered a salary less than a quarter of my younger, whiter, less experienced predecessor. #CharitySoWhite
— Gloria Davies-Coates (@gl0ria) August 20, 2019
#CharitySoWhite Where to start..1/2
When I got promoted and other colleagues asked me to my face if it was "positive discrimination". The stares I got anytime I interacted with another black colleague. So many times I got "confused" with another WOC colleague. https://t.co/6RudTeqqwm
— Collette (@brandbycollette) August 20, 2019
This #CharitySoWhite tweet sadly resonates with my experience in the UK. When I was a director, I was mistaken for as an administrator, a waitress serving drinks at our own and other's AGMs and whoever it is who is *not* a director. https://t.co/76NjohDung
— Eiri Ohtani (@EiriOhtani) August 19, 2019
…while many on Twitter called for action, for greater diversity and inclusion, or pledged their support:
I will no longer fund an org unless racial equality is a top priority. I am ending partnerships if an action plan + time line to do this can not be made. Looking for Abstinence Addiction treatment providers addressing this ASAP!!#CharitySoWhite
— Lily Lewis (@Lilyellewis) August 20, 2019
#CharitySoWhite will be a difficult read for most people working in or for the charity sector.
The sector needs to be challenged & this is the start. Thank you to all the champions speaking out & sharing their experiences.
— Jude Habib (@JudeHabib) August 20, 2019
— Hannah Chandisingh (@HChandisingh) August 20, 2019
My experience in the sector has taught me that whilst often predominantly white management have right intentions on racial equality, there's too little concrete action taken due to lack of experience or understanding of what racism actuality is. #CharitySoWhite
— Jon Cornejo (@Jon_Cornejo) August 20, 2019
However, the hashtag also raised a few questions, largely from outside of the sector:
— Tom Baird 🇬🇧 (@ThomasBaird1997) August 20, 2019
Never mind that you're trying to make the world a better place, minimize suffering, or support vulnerable people. Your skin is the wrong colour. #CharitySoWhite
— Travenum (@travenum) August 20, 2019
Twitter is currently out-doing itself with #CharitySoWhite. The fact that so many users see no issue with that hashtag, on several levels, says a lot for the user base.
— Robert Nelson (@Admiral_Rob) August 20, 2019
More recent news on diversity within the charity sector:
Diversity news round up July 2019
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