It goes without saying, but it must be said because silence is not the ally of historically marginalized peoples. For this reason, the Block Watch Society of BC wishes to issue the accompanying statement in solidarity with Black, Indigenous & People of Colour (BIPOC), and a movement that seeks racial equality before the law and in our communities.
We issue this statement in our capacity as a not-for-profit organization that sets the standard for local crime prevention across BC. Though we do not control the levers of power, if you stop to think about it, the collective fears and openness of our communities are indeed the most powerful determinant in whether our communities will mend or break on race and ethnic lines. Therefore, we wish to lay out this initial but firm policy statement against racism and listen to your feedback as we move forward. We fully support the rights, inclusion, dignity and reconciliation of racialized minorities. Block Watch is about empowering all members of a community so they have equal access to police service.
Please tell us your neighbourhood experiences of being a Black, Indigenous or person of colour (or an ally), and how you have used Block Watch to improve relationships. In order to achieve BIPOC equality in Block Watch, we are exploring ways to involve Block Watch groups to help us adapt to these important issues.
The Block Watch Society’s Statement on Black, Indigenous & People of Colour
“Block Watch is a program dedicated to improving the safety, cohesion and resilience of residents in a participating localized neighbourhood. Block Watch has always been about education, awareness and joining neighbourhoods with police in an inclusive way, to the benefit of all. We do not, at any time, promote or condone the exclusion of any person based on race, colour, ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age or political belief (BC Human Rights Code, www.ccdi.ca). We at the Block Watch Society of BC are reviewing our operations including policies, training materials, and communications, to increase accessibility to all BIPOC members of our communities throughout BC.”
By Gabriel Pelletier