The City of White Rock approved a new human-resources policy last month that “publicly acknowledges the existence of racism” while also committing to taking action to ensure an inclusive, safe environment and city hall.
According to a news release issued Thursday, the Anti-Racial Discrimination and Anti-Racism policy, which was was approved by council on Nov. 23, “commits to respecting the fundamental rights, personal worth and dignity of People of Colour and Indigenous Peoples, and commits to the day-to-day operations and governance of local government in a manner that is free of racism and racial discrimination.”
It applies to “everyone who works for, volunteers for, does business with and generally interacts with the City of White Rock,” the release notes.
The creation of the policy follows a recommendation to council earlier this year from the COVID-19 Recovery Task Force, which asked the city to “explore an approach of outreach for the community in relation to racism and to ensure that all people feel comfortable and valued in White Rock.”
The recommendation was endorsed by council on Sept. 14.
“In White Rock, we are proud of our community’s culture of respect and inclusion. But there is still more for us to do. Each of us has a responsibility to think every day about how our words and our actions may be expressing bias, even without our intent. Racist attitudes translate into racist acts,” said Mayor Darryl Walker.
“By publicly coming forward and committing to ensure an inclusive, respectful and welcoming environment, we are demonstrating an important step forward—a step I hope will inspire others.”