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Core Values

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity

The following statement explains the Burlington Children's Space perspective on inclusion.

We expect that any member of the Burlington Children’s Space community will maintain, advocate for, and respect our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion statement. If you feel like you do not align with these values, Burlington Children’s Space likely isn’t the place for you. If you’d like to learn more and practice these values, please come grow with us. 

 

At BCS…

  • We recognize the power and benefits of diversity and inclusivity.

  • We honor Vermont’s Indigenous people, primarily members of the Abenaki, who have cared for and continue to care for the land we sit on.

  • We expect all staff, families, and community members to take responsibility for biased actions, even if unintended, and actively work to repair the harm. 

  • We expect all staff, families, and community members to build awareness and understanding of their own culture, personal beliefs, identities, values, and biases.

  • We expect all staff, families, and community members to acknowledge and seek to understand structural inequities and their impact over time.

  • We expect all staff, families, and community members to view their commitment to cultural responsiveness as an ongoing process.

  • We expect all staff, families, and community members to recognize that the professional knowledge base is changing. 

Definitions:

  • Bias: favoring one type of thing, person, or group over another, usually in a way considered to be unfair.

  • Culture: the customs, arts, social institutions, and achievements of a particular nation, people, or other social group.

  • Cultural Responsiveness: understanding and respecting that each person brings many different variables, experiences, and perspectives to each interaction.

  • Diversity: the practice or quality of including or involving people from a range of different social and ethnic backgrounds.

  • Equity: the quality of being fair and impartial.

  • Inclusion: providing equal access to opportunities and resources for people who might otherwise be excluded or marginalized.

  • Marginalized: treated as insignificant or secondary.

    • Examples include: People of color, Indigenous people, immigrants, LGBTQ+ folks, people living in poverty, people with disabilities, women, and people with mental illness. This is a list of those most often referred to as marginalized, but we recognize there are individuals who do not identify as part of these categories who are also marginalized.

  • Structural Inequities: differences in wealth, resources, and other outcomes that are the result of institutions (such as legal, educational, business, government, and health care systems) discriminating against certain groups and not others.

DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSIVITY POLICY

In the event that someone in the BCS community acts in ways that do not align with the above statement, we will take the following steps. The goal of these steps is to repair any harm done and to help all members of our community feel safe.

Steps:

  1. If you witness a comment/action from anyone in the BCS community that does not align with our diversity, equity, and inclusion statement, let the Director and Program Director know immediately.

  2. A meeting will be set up with the Director, Program Director, and the person who made the comment/action to discuss the harm caused.

  3. Then a meeting will be scheduled with the Director, Program Director, and the person who was harmed to work on repair and safety, which includes creating a plan to move forward so everyone is safe at BCS.

  4. If both parties are willing, we will all meet to acknowledge the harm, review the safety plan, and discuss resources to help move forward. This meeting might include outside organizations to support the discussion.

  5. If these steps do not resolve the issue, it will be sent to the Board of Directors for more discussion and review. Additional resources will be used to repair harm such as Restorative Circles.

  6. If harm is not acknowledged and taken responsibility for, a change will need to be made within the program. Examples of this would be changing classrooms or leaving BCS.

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