In the local antiracism work, representation plays a crucial role. Public administrations all across Europe start processes of intercultural opening to motivate more people affected by racism to work within the administration. Many studies show that administrations do not reflect the diversity of the population they serve. The representation BIPoC (Black Indigenous People of Color) increases the legitimacy of public administration actions through representation of all sections of the population, and helps public administrations to perform its tasks more appropriately in increasingly heterogeneous societies. The voice and expertise of people affected by racism within our institutions is a crucial element for creating cities for us all.
At the same time, BIPoC in predominantly white administrations often face particular challenges. Racism at the work place, being used as poster child for diversity policies, criticism from own communities or isolation from people who share these experiences, just to name a few. However, having BIPoC within local administrations is crucial for shaping an inclusive society. It will not only help to minimize blank spots but it will also significantly improve local antiracism policies and the trust in the city administration as service provider for citizens in their diversity.
For this reason a network for people affected by racism in city administrations has been formed within the ECCAR with the aim to open a safer space to share experiences, exchange strategies, support and learn from each other and address common challenges of city administrations in the area of representation and accessibility for BIPoC. The work is coordinated by Marie Paule N’Guessan and ECCAR Director Evein Obulor. To learn more you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org.