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Cultivating Cultures of Belonging: Why READI2B is the Future of Inclusion

Updated: Mar 29

In the midst of a society grappling with the pervasive impacts of White Supremacy, the imperative for organizations to evolve beyond traditional Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) frameworks towards more comprehensive strategies like Race Equity, Accessibility, Diversity, Intersectionality, Inclusion, and Belonging (READI2B) has never been more critical. This transformation is essential for creating environments where Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) are not merely surviving but thriving.

Traditional DEI initiatives, while well-intentioned, often fall short in fostering genuine inclusivity and equity. This shortfall is primarily due to their limited scope, focusing predominantly on surface-level diversity and inclusion without adequately addressing the underlying White Supremacy Culture that permeates organizational structures and societal norms. This culture undermines the efforts to create a truly inclusive and equitable environment, leaving BIPOC individuals to navigate systems inherently designed against their success.

READI2B represents a paradigm shift, offering a holistic approach that prioritizes race equity as a foundational element.

This approach acknowledges that institutional and systemic racism are deeply entrenched in organizational cultures, hindering the retention of diverse staff and perpetuating inequities. By leading with race equity, READI2B initiatives aim to dismantle these barriers, ensuring that diversity extends beyond physical appearance to include a diversity of thought, cultural expression, and full participation.

The READI2B framework emphasizes the importance of intersectionality, recognizing that individuals navigate multiple identities that intersect and influence their experiences of power, privilege, and oppression. This perspective is crucial for understanding the complex realities BIPOC individuals face and for implementing strategies that address these multifaceted challenges.

Furthermore, READI2B advocates for a shift away from White normative behaviors and standards, challenging the notion that the White way of being is the only or the right way. This shift requires a conscious effort to explore and integrate diverse cultural perspectives and practices, promoting a balance that respects and values different ways of being and working.

The push for READI2B also involves tackling the adaptive challenge of changing hearts and minds within organizations. This challenge is particularly daunting when addressing race and White Supremacy culture, as these topics are often met with resistance. However, by confronting these issues head-on and fostering an environment of openness and learning, organizations can begin to make meaningful progress towards creating a culture of belonging where everyone feels valued and empowered.

In conclusion, as we navigate the complexities of a society deeply influenced by White Supremacy, the transition from DEI to READI2B is not just necessary but imperative for the creation of just and equitable spaces.

By embracing READI2B, organizations can move towards dismantling systemic barriers, fostering true diversity and inclusion, and ensuring that all individuals, particularly those from BIPOC communities, have the opportunity to thrive.

This transformative journey requires dedication, courage, and a commitment to challenging the status quo, but it is a vital step towards building a more inclusive and equitable world.


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