Inclusion

In summer 2017, after several years of internal discussion, the English Language Arts Network (ELAN) embarked on a process of creating an inclusion plan. The Inclusion Plan outlines the actions that have been taken by ELAN in the development of our policy and introduces actions that will be taken over a five-year period from 2017-2022.

When ELAN began in 2004, the organization was focused on building positive bridges between the two solitudes of French- and English-speaking arts communities. This focus will remain present throughout our work. However, we recognize that in the 15 years since ELAN started, the context of the arts community has shifted and other issues have been raised. Conversations about inclusion, diversity, and equity have made clear that many of Quebec’s English-speaking artists face specific barriers due to discrimination based on race, gender, disability, Indigeneity, language, and a number of other factors.

This plan mobilizes our priorities as an organization serving the English-speaking community of Quebec to integrate values of inclusion and equity in the specific areas of our work in Membership, Human Resources, Governance, Advocacy, and Communications.

Recognizing the need to support this ongoing work, ELAN commits to using our platforms to amplify the voices of organizations and communities who are directly implicated by a given issue and have lived experience and expertise. Through our role as a member-driven umbrella organization, we work toward filling existing gaps and, unless specifically requested, defer to grassroots groups on issues that impact them directly. Meaningful community consultations and the democratic participation of our members will continue to be part of our mandate and inform our programming.

To ensure that we use our platform to amplify voices that need to be heard, ELAN commits to investing time and resources to build strong, meaningful, and reciprocal relationships with organizational partners and individuals who work towards a more inclusive arts and culture sector in Quebec.

Did You Know?

Inclusion Committee

The Inclusion Committee was mandated by ELAN’s Board to develop an inclusion policy for ELAN. Once this policy is completed, the mandate may shift. In the meantime, committee members are speaking from their own experiences and ELAN’s mandate with respect to Inclusion issues.

Community Feedback

At the heart of this plan is an acknowledgement that our work on inclusion and diversity is ongoing, will evolve, and will involve mistakes. It is active work, involving all of us and all parts of ELAN. We would like to invite our members and communities to provide feedback on our Inclusion Plan. This can be done via email to admin@quebec-elan.org. We will also be hosting an event in the fall, during which there will be an open forum for public input.

Funding Acknowledgements

We are grateful to the Conseil des arts de Montreal (CAM) for their financial support of this work.