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  • Writer's pictureAlyscia Raines

How to Address Today's Insurrection at the Nation's Capitol

January 6, 2021

1. Address it. I cannot stress the importance of not going about "business as usual". Today was anything but usual, to say the least. You must address it, by name. There was an attempted coup by a violent and aggressive mob, most of whom were White, male, supporters of the sitting President. (Feel free to use other pointed and directed descriptors).

2. Engage in your own #reflection and self-work. Journal, pray, meditate on the impact today's events have had on you personally. Do so even if you think there is no impact at all and think about why you might not feel impacted and others do. What factors might be contributing to this?

3. Talk through things with a friend, spouse, or family member that you can share your raw feelings with. Be open and also willing to hear dissenting opinions or viewpoints. Doing so in this private way allows you to make space for others at the office, especially if taking on the role of a facilitator.

4. Leave space for processing with your team. Whether #wfh or in the office, it is important to hold space for processing. This can look like allowing people to share thoughts/ feelings, asking questions, pair/share, and more. Ideally, you would begin this conversation at the beginning of a meeting (or email correspondence) and state some community norms to guide the conversation. Also, offer resources available through HR and other sources.

5. Assess your own company culture and the ways in which your group may or may not uphold systems that perpetuate privilege and power to those with agentic identities. What steps might you personally be able to commit to?

*And whatever you do, do not tokenize colleagues from marginalized groups (ie. Black, Indigenous/ Native, Queer, Trans) asking them to speak on behalf of entire demographic groups. That is harmful and will have an adverse impact.

What other ideas and suggestions do you have to talk about today's events at #capitolhill?

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