U of T to mark International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

a closeup of flowers near Robarts library

(photo by Polina Teif)

The Ƶ is bringing together perspectives from across the tri-campus community to mark the  (IDERD).

Established by the United Nations, IDERD is observed on March 21, the day that in 1960, police opened fire on a group of peaceful protesters in Sharpeville, South Africa, killing 69 people.

U of T recognizes IDERD annually as part of its ongoing commitment to eliminating racial discrimination and racism across the university while promoting a more inclusive learning and working environment. 

Presented by the Institutional Equity Office and the  in collaboration with the Rotman School of Management’s Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Office, this year’s event –  – will be held in Rotman’s Desautels Hall and broadcast via livestream.

Nythalah Baker, director of U of T Mississauga’s , and Natasha Prashad, adviser in the Anti-Racism & Cultural Diversity Office, will emcee the proceedings, which are set to open with remarks from Jodie Glean-Mitchell, executive director, equity, diversity and inclusion in U of T’s Division of People Strategy, Equity & Culture.

Glean-Mitchell is also scheduled to speak on a panel about the challenges and opportunities of navigating EDI work alongside Allison Burgess, director of U of T’s , Bharat Saini, director, equity, diversity and inclusion in the Faculty of Arts & Science, and Angela Treglia, executive director, sexual violence strategy, prevention and support at the . The discussion will be moderated by Alexie Tcheuyap, associate vice-president and vice-provost, international student experience.

Later, Cherilyn Scobie Edwards, senior director of U of T Scarborough’s , will moderate a discussion featuring the perspectives and reflections of Black women in leadership. Panellists include Catherine Chandler-Crichlow, dean of the School of Continuing Studies, Sharon Grandison, director of human resources in the Faculty of Kinesiology & Physical Education, Janelle Joseph, assistant professor of critical studies of race and Indigeneity at KPE, and Lesa Williams-George, director of equity, inclusion and transformative practices at Victoria College.

There will also be a panel on enhancing community strategies to address anti-Asian racism on campus moderated by Loretta Ho, program and faculty development consultant in the Division of the Vice-President and Vice-Provost. The panellists include Vikram Chadalawada, director, IT strategy, innovations and digital transformation at Student Life, Joyce Hahn, chief administrative officer in the Division of the Vice-President & Provost, David Kim, warden at Hart House, and Afsana Miah, vice-president, academics and student affairs in the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union at U of T Scarborough.

Art therapist and psychotherapist Phuong Nguyen will close out the proceedings with art-centred activities that centre hope, restoration and care.