The Anti-Racism Industry

Gone are the days when members of parliament served their role of involving citizens in consultations through such vehicles as public hearings and townhalls. In August 2018, AC Nielsen Company of Canada was hired by the Liberal government to implement a "national anti-racism engagement strategy" and paid $336,474. Public servants have similarly been displaced. TKB Consulting was hired to conduct "anti-racism and anti-oppression training" for the relatively small amount of $14,238.00.

Global Affairs Canada hired DiversiPro for an "inclusion, diversity, equity and anti-racism initiative," that cost $32,968.88. In September 2021 it also hired QuakeLab Inc. for "diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism consultant services" valued at $35,821. Jack-Davies Cross-Cultural Solutions was hired in September 2020 to provide Global Affairs Canada (GAC) with "advice on institutional changes needed at GAC in the areas of anti-racism and inclusion." It was paid $39,000.

Boys And Girls Clubs of Canada received $39,846.25 in February 2021 by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) for a "youth-led mentoring project to address systemic racism and support increased equity and inclusion of black, Indigenous and people of colour youth."

Rumina Morris, BSW, RSW, was paid $22,600 by ESDC in October 2021, to serve as an "anti-racism discussion facilitator to support group learning on an anti-racist, equitable, diverse and inclusive" basis. Daniel Consulting Group was paid $39,550 in July 2020 to provide "training to raise awareness" of ESDC staff members "on anti-black racism and the realities of black serving organizations."

Diversity Trainers Plus Inc was hired in February 2021 for $13,739.51 to conduct workshops on "unconscious bias and racism" for Environment and Climate Change Canada. The same agency hired Dr. Farha Shariff in December 2021 for "anti-racism and unconscious bias session facilitation" paying $33,327.81.

Anima Leadership Inc received $22,600 to provide "training on addressing systemic racism" in August 2021 for Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Consultants received $40,680 from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research in November 2021 to provide a "facilitator for listening sessions on systemic racism in the Health Research funding system."

QMR Staffing Solutions Inc received $222,892 in January 2021 for "Leadership development services to provide anti-racism coaching, training and advisory services" at Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

The company 12591219 Canada Inc was paid $12,430 in May 2021 to serve as training consultants for Family Law and Youth Justice Policy Section employees on Anti-racism at the Department of Justice Canada.

In March 2021, Graybridge Malkam was paid $22,001.98 to serve as a "senior Leadership Development Consultant to design and facilitate bilingual, virtual educational sessions regarding racism and allyship" at the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat.

Diversity Trainers Plus Inc was paid $39,550 in December 2020 to provide "the services to develop an anti-racism/discrimination strategy" at the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.

Mobile Resource Group Inc was paid $67,619.20 for a contract that began in June 2021 to conduct an "anti-racism and discrimination review" for the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

The Canadian Human Rights Commission hired Charles C. Smith Consulting for "anti-racism organizational change consulting services," paying them $36,725.00.

One of the largest private contracts was given to Humanity Agency Ltd in Toronto. On December 1, 2021 the Department of Canadian Heritage awarded a $2.4 million contract "to develop, implement, manage, create awareness of, facilitate the exchange of information, and report on the marketing, programs and content integration" in support a "Public Education and Awareness Anti-Racism Campaign targeted to non-racialized Canadian middle-aged adults and non-racialized Canadian adults."

The company was selected through competitive bidding based on "the best overall proposal."

The first part of the contract valued at $1.2 million was paid for work conducted from December through to March 2022 and on March 29, the second installment was paid for work to be carried from April 2022 through to March 2023.

The objective is further detailed: "Generate awareness and serve to operationalize the Federal Secretariat's work of implementing the community engagement and public awareness objectives of Building a Foundation: Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy 2019-2022," assigned the acronym of CARS.

The directive for the campaign states it will "weave together an emotionally compelling narrative of contemporary Canadian identity and values as antithetical to racism and racial discrimination." The narrative should be one that "directly supports social cohesion, strength in diversity and inclusivity." It is to "eventually further strengthen Canada's leadership of these values on the global stage."

The objective is also described as providing Canadians with "targeted, timely, relevant, comprehensive and accessible information to educate the public as well as tools and activities that empower them to combat racism in their communities." Tools such as social media and other "outreach tactics" are to be used.

The "primary target" of the campaign is "non-racialized Canadian middle-aged adults (age 30-44)" which is further broken down to those living in urban and rural regions, in which there are "urban and rural racism hotspots." The "secondary target" is 18—29-year-old "non-racialized urban and rural" Canadians, as well as those aged 45 - 64.

The contract notice explains that the awareness campaign should "increase the level of target audience knowledge and understanding of:

"- how implicit bias, and current racism and discrimination (both systemic and individual) impact people in Canada (including the latest revised definitions of racism and related terms)

"- Canada's history of systemic racism and Indigenous Peoples as well as Black, Asian and racialized and religious minority communities' long-standing legacy of countering racism and discrimination."

It is also to raise awareness of the target audience about "specific steps they can take to address and counter racism as they experience or observe it in their everyday lives (both systemic and individual). This is expected to "increase the number of target audience members active in combating racism in their communities through such activities as: speaking out on discrimination and its impacts; working to dismantle systemic barriers; and decreasing implicit bias."

This article was published in
Volume 52 Number 7 - July 17, 2022

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