The North West Migrants Forum and Belfast Multi Cultural Association will open the first ever Advancing Race Equality Awards in Northern Ireland. The Awards seeks to showcase the outstanding work being done to tackle racism, advance racial equality and fairness across Northern Ireland. The award is given with the aim of honouring people and organizations that set an example through their work contributing to reconciliation, human rights, overcoming of racism and harnessing a truly inclusive society in Northern Ireland.
The Northwest Migrants Forum recognises that positive action is required to meet the needs of minority ethnic people and to redress the existing disadvantages. We know that an award alone, cannot eradicate the racism and inequalities suffered by minority ethnic people here. Combating racism and racial inequalities is a task for everyone and if we are to succeed in this aim, we will need to enlist the support and active participation of all sections of society.
What the award recognises:
People, organizations, or networks that:
- Create an inclusive culture by challenging race inequalities, barriers, and bias in the application of policy for example, inclusive representation, talent development, career development and promotion.
- Leads positive actions or interventions to enable talented ethnic minority people to realise their full potential.
- Acts as a role model or ally in championing anti-racism ethos and promote interculturalism at all levels in society.
- Takes steps to eliminate or reduce racist incidents, racial bullying, harassment, discrimination, and race hate crimes.
Demonstrates positive outcomes arising from their interventions for ethnic minority individuals and their community, organisation/institution and can demonstrate the potential for scaling up or demonstrating initiatives to progress racial equality in society.
The Advancing Race Equality Awards is underpinned by six fundamental guiding principles.
- Racial inequalities are a significant issue within our society today
- Racial inequalities are not necessarily overt, isolated incidents. Racism is an everyday facet of Northern Irish society and racial inequalities manifest themselves in everyday situations, processes, and behaviours.
- Northern Ireland cannot reach its full potential unless it can benefit from the talents of the whole population and until individuals from all ethnic backgrounds can benefit equally from the opportunities it affords.
- In developing solutions to racial inequalities, it is important that they are aimed at achieving long-term societal culture change, avoiding a deficit model where solutions are aimed at changing the individual.
- Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people are not a homogenous group. People from different ethnic backgrounds have different experiences of and outcomes from/within society, and that complexity needs to be considered in analysing data and developing actions.
- All individuals have multiple identities, and the intersection of those different identities must be considered in an inclusive and shared future
Award recipients must demonstrate their commitment to the above principles and adopt them within their policies, practices, and culture. The idea is for everyone, institutions/ organisations undertake a full evaluation of their attitude, practices and how they adhere to these simple principles to advance racial equality in Northern Ireland
Rising star; The rising star category recognises those young people who have initiated processes or begun working on race equality agenda within their school, community or organisation
She Inspires; This category recognises community champions and women who have gone above and beyond in the course of their work, service and passions to challenge racial discrimination in workplaces and in society
He inspires; This category recognises community champions and men who have gone above and beyond in the course of their work, service and passions to challenge racial discrimination in workplaces and in society
Breaking barriers; recognises an outstanding individual, organisation, business or public sector organisation for their work in tackling racism, reducing barriers for racialised people experiencing marginalization and promoting peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland
Anti-Racism Champion of the year: honour exceptional individuals who have gone above and beyond in the course of their work, service, passion and use their privileges to challenge systemic racism and actively take steps to address racial inequalities in Northern Ireland.
Emerging Leader: recognises an outstanding young person age 14-18, for their work in building intercultural trust with special emphasis on future-oriented peace work at grassroots level; for example, striving for peace in areas struggling for the rights of marginalized people or work that reduce barriers to peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland
He/ She inspires young person of the year; This category recognises young people ages 18-30 who have gone above and beyond in the course of their community service to challenge racial discrimination to achieve an inclusive and shared future
Anti- Racism Campaign in Media; This category recognises the work of individuals/ media outlets in highlighting racism and providing platforms for racialized people to drive change
Anti- racism school of the year; Award category recognises education institutions that actively challenge everyday racism and structural race inequalities in education through policy, evidence-based practice and the professional development of teachers and school personnel on racial literacy and anti-racism education
Race Equality Life Achievements Award: This category recognises individuals who have a minimum of two decades of extraordinary long-term involvement and service to the field of racial justice and human rights. The recipient will have a recognized level of significant engagement in racial justice work and have demonstrated exemplary leadership in advocating for human rights and equality in Northern Ireland
Advancing Racial Justice and Fairness Award. This category recognises an individual, team, group, network, or organisation taking action or leading the urgent movement to build a fair, equitable, and anti-racist Northern Ireland.
Courage award: this category is awarded to individuals who have demonstrated exceptional courage and leadership in challenging systemic/ institutional racism and actively advancing racial justice, human rights and equality in Northern Ireland.
Nomination and the online application process will open later this year. Further details and links will be posted in due course.