A few years ago I decided to embark on a backpacking trip across Europe for two months. Towards the end of my travels, I found myself at the Sisteen Chapel in Rome, Italy. As I was standing there, enchanted by this insanely crazy masterpiece, I felt a soft whisper perk the tiny hairs on the back of my neck.
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If an event, program, or institution is created to support a specific group of people, who determines the membership in and the rules to be followed by that group? Does it matter whether the group identifies itself as disadvantaged? What if others see the group as privileged?
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Forget Gates and Zuckerberg. These young philanthropists do things on the ground, using their celebrity and foundations to battle hunger and disease, and expand access to education and sports, among an array of social causes.
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Rather than close the Global Affairs Canada's Office of Religious Freedom, Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion should seize the opportunity to transform it into a real force for change for all excluded minorities in developing countries.
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The show made up for all of the tension currently present in Hollywood after the #OscarsSoWhite controversy. The winners were not given a chance to shine at previous award shows this season, but made sure to make the most out of their time in the spotlight.
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There aren't enough movies being made with Black actors, which is why we are outnumbered on nomination day. We need to hold the industry accountable for not creating more opportunities for Black actors, not funding Black films and making silly excuses like the financial bottom line.
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As corporate globalization undermines the standard of living of working families, workers will re-discover the value of grassroots organizing and collective representation. In the process, a whole new generation of diverse, talented leaders will come to the fore.
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The moments that reminded us slowly — but surely — this industry is moving in the right direction.
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The disconnect is clear. Canada's economy needs both genders at the wheel, but men are currently still doing the majority of the driving. What can businesses do to improve? The good news is that there are a number of solutions, but they need to be taken seriously.
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Differences are what enrich our lives and make Toronto the fabulous, unique, successful city it is. Xenophobia (a fear or hatred of strangers and foreigners) has no place in a city built upon these differences. It threatens the very core of who we as Torontonians are. It is also what motivated the horrific and unacceptable attack in which a woman was beaten and robbed by two young men. They tore off her hijab and told her to "Go back to your country."
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Canadian companies have the potential to become more competitive if their boards are comprised of directors who are the most qualified in a greatly-expanded pool of potential directors. But to do this, we need increase the pace of change to achieve board diversity and gender parity.
In a world where a two-way exchange between government and citizen is the goal, it's encouraging when we see it actually happening. Since September, there have been a number of calls for insights from citizens. The end goal is to create the first ever comprehensive culture strategy for the province of Ontario.
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"Books have such a huge influence on people."
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As Canadians, we pride ourselves on our diversity and acceptance and, while things have come a long way in a short period of time and progress continues to be made, the survey results show that more needs to be done. As employers, we have an opportunity to pay attention, learn and be better.
Growing up as a South Asian, second-generation Canadian in suburban Montreal, I remember standing in the school auditorium on Remembrance Day as we'd hear stories from veterans of the Second World war. Doing so was an integral part of our Canadian upbringing in our parent's adopted home.
To honour Canada's diversity, how about this year we remember some of the victims of that empire? Our racist and colonial past, as well as Canada's role in exploiting people of colour all over the world, must also be included in our remembrance if we are to build a nation of respect for all people -- the essence of real diversity.
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As power and privilege concentrate at the highest offices in our country, little room is left for the unusual suspects. We need white privileged men to play an active role in changing the status quo. Prime Minister Trudeau has, to his credit, accomplished an elusive and noteworthy achievement by using his privilege to bridge the often insurmountable leap between merit and power. He made space for his colleagues who deserve to operate in that exclusive arena.
From a talent acquisition and recruitment point of view, one thing is quite clear: Justin Trudeau is off to a good start. Over the more than quarter century that I've been vetting and recommending candidates for leadership roles in global companies, I've learned that actions indeed speak louder than words, symbolism matters, diverse points of view should be promoted, and a strong team trumps a strong individual all the time.
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"There are meritorious MPs of all shades, genders and orientations."
Forget the mommy wars. Companies pit us against each other and sell more products. Once we realize that mommy wars don't exist and that we are all actually just trying to do whatever works best for us we can focus on talking about our differences and opening ourselves up to what others are doing and have to say.
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It is frequently said that Hollywood is "out of new ideas" and the rash of sequels and reboots attest to this. The reality though is that a small subset of a small subset of the global population is running out of new ideas.
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When making predictions about economic success, it is impossible to know what the future holds. Yet the corporate investment in women certainly isn't a hedge. Beyond simply a moral obligation towards equal opportunity, there is fiscal value in utilizing a previously undervalued resource.
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I've been asked, "Where are you from?" more times at the bank than at any other workplace. The query is almost always followed by an individual's shock of how kind, efficient, or great my service was. In their mind, there's no way a black girl from [insert black country here] can be so nice at customer service.
When a regulator advises a board of corporate directors that progress on gender diversity is "simply not good enough," that is code that the status quo will not continue and that more regulation may result. And the second wave of regulation is often worse than the first.
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What does it mean to be an Arab living in the West? Can I be part of two worlds and to what extent? Going through an identity crisis, results into an ongoing questioning. It is the process of reflecting on the shattered pieces of memory, an abandoned language and understanding of one's ancestors and history.
All you have to do is bring Mather Nature indoors in the form of plants. For many Canadians, this isn't entirely a new concept. For decades, plants have been brought into the home and office to brighten up the mood and add some colour to an otherwise drab atmosphere. But the benefits are far greater than aesthetics.
On a continent where people of colour have been, and continue to be, terrorized, dehumanized, brutally murdered and denied basic human rights based on the colour of their skin, a grievance white people have not experienced, white people don't need to come together to lend moral and emotional support for their brethren in the same way people of colour do. So knowing that some racist folks are hell bent on creating "safe" spaces to fight the "tyranny" of multiculturalism, I'm left with only one question: If white people are losing in our country, who the hell is winning?
Although the friends, connections and lessons gained through SHAD stay with you long after the program, it's supposed to be one of those once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. I am one of the lucky few who got a second chance to experience it, albeit through a different perspective.
Because ALL skin tones are beautiful.
Last week, a woman travellingon a Porter flight from New York to Toronto was asked to move to another seat to accommodate an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man. The woman was very upset. She said that the man never looked at her nor spoke to her. It may be rare for Porter Airlines, but our public schools, like our airplanes, trains, busses, theatres and other public venues are facing a an increase in such requests.
Over the following months in 2001, the violence continued in Burundi between the rebels and the government. My passion for my work diminished. I no longer felt like doing anything. I even stopped watching the news on TV, or even listening to it on my own radio station. Everything looked hopeless. In 2002, some Canadian journalists visited Burundi. If I were going to ask for help, it was now or never. Six months later, they invited me to visit Canada, and I jumped on the opportunity. I arrived in Canada with $60 in my pocket -- my mother's life savings.
Communities are comprised of a diverse mix of people, functions, and uses. The built form that we give to communities helps to foster connections and communication: it becomes the stage for our culture.