University of Toronto launches task force to examine systemic racism

Professor Dexter Voisin

The University of Toronto has launched a task force that will explore how the university’s policies and practices contribute to systemic anti-Black racism, and provide actionable recommendations to advance Black equity, inclusion and excellence on its three campuses.

The work of the task force will build on previous reports and consultations, identify gaps and offer recommendations to address Black racial inequities within the tri-campus community.

A final report will be presented to Meric Gertler, U of T’s president, Cheryl Regehr, vice-president and provost, and Kelly Hannah-Moffat, vice-president, human resources and equity, by March 31, 2021.

“Anti-Black racism affects all of us. We need to listen, learn and do more to eliminate racial discrimination,” Hannah-Moffat said.

 “A recognition of racism is insufficient. Racism is not an issue for Black and racialized communities to address. Iit impacts everyone and it is our collective responsibility to take steps to eliminate barriers and create inclusive spaces for Black students, staff and faculty and librarians.

“We are committed to creating lasting, meaningful change.”

The task force is led by four co-chairs: Professor Dexter Voisin, dean of the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work; Professor Njoki Wane, chair of social justice education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, Desma Charlemagne-Michel, director of human resources at U of T Scarborough; and Roger Bulgin, chief administrative officer at Woodsworth College.

A call to nominate task force members will be issued in the coming weeks, and will be open to students, staff, faculty, researchers and librarians.

U of T News