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The important work of confronting anti-Black racism epitomizes our university’s commitment to being unapologetically bold and intentionally inclusive. We can build a stronger and more vibrant community—and create a just, caring and prosperous future for all—by taking bold and intentional action today.

What is anti-Black racism?

In short, anti-Black racism is a term that describes the beliefs, attitudes, prejudice, stereotyping and discrimination directed at people of African descent. These beliefs, attitudes, and so on are held by individuals and also are embedded in the policies and practices of institutions, including universities.

The term was first used in a Canadian context by Dr. Akua Benjamin, Professor Emeritus and former Director of TMU’s School of Social Work. Dr. Benjamin’s work “seeks to highlight the unique nature of systemic racism on Black Canadians and the history as well as experiences of slavery and colonization of people of Black-African descent in Canada.”

Our commitment as a university

Our university must be a progressive place where all people feel welcomed, included and able to bring their whole selves to their campus activities. Our students must become culturally responsive, global-minded leaders prepared for a diverse democracy and society. Our entire community must invest in our relationship capital, which includes seeing, experiencing and affirming each other based on our interconnectedness.

To achieve these aims, the university has made dismantling all forms of anti-Black racism and oppression a strategic priority. Together, we take on this important work during the International Decade for People of African Descent (2015-2024), a global recognition of this distinct group whose human rights must be promoted and protected. This intentional work will become a distinguishing feature of our university.

“I would love to see TMU become the hub of Black scholarship and anti-Black racism knowledge production that support community development, service and student development.”

Dr. Akua Benjamin, Professor Emeritus and former Director of TMU’s School of Social Work