Webinar: Safe & Equitable Engagement Spaces in the Age of COVID-19

March 30, 2020

With all of us social-distancing, we are seeing an unprecedented uptake in online engagement opportunities. It’s important to remember that creating safe and equitable spaces needs to happen online, just as much as it happens in-person (if not more so). How can we take an equity lens to our online convening?

The SFU Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue recently held an online webinar with guests Cicely Belle Blain and Alia Ali to discuss equity, safety and inclusion in online engagement. This webinar explored the experience of minority communities in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as innovations and tips from different communities to create meaningful and respectful online engagement spaces.

About The Speakers

Cicely Belle Blain

Cicely Belle Blain is a Black/mixed, queer femme from London now living on the lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh people. At the heart of all their work, Cicely Belle harnesses their passion for justice, liberation and meaningful change via transformative education, always with laughter, and fearlessly in the face of resistance. They are noted for founding Black Lives Matter Vancouver and subsequently being listed as one Vancouver’s 50 most powerful people, BC Business’s 30 under 30 and one of 150 Black women and non-binary people making change across Canada. They are now the CEO of Cicely Blain Consulting, social justice-informed diversity and inclusion consulting company with over 100 clients across North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Cicely Belle is an instructor in Executive Leadership at Simon Fraser University, Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue Associate and the author of Burning Sugar (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2020). They love dinosaurs, Instagram and YA fantasy.

Alia Ali

Alia Ali is an instructor, consultant, and activist. She has always lived a life of service to her community – creating and running programs for youth, working in the corporate world of waterworks, and serving as an executive in a start-up tech company in Vancouver. Alia is also an outspoken advocate for empathy and anti-racism. She does a lot of work with Rotary and is the current President of the Surrey Rotaract Club as well as a Director of the Big West Rotaract Organization where she serves and empowers young professionals as well as trying to help Rotary in the Diversity Equity and Inclusion department making the organization more equitable and accessible for all. Alia is also currently a Female Empowerment and Leadership Instructor for the non-profit Voices of Muslim Women and is delighted to be a part of this series.