International Decade for People of African Descent Advisory Committee

The City of Victoria has acknowledged and recognized the International Decade for People of African Decent 2015-2024 for the purpose of promoting respect, protection and fulfillment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms of people of African descent, as recognized in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights.

Recruitment Update

Thank you to all those who applied to participate on the City's new International Decade for People of African Descent Advisory Committee. Those appointed to the Committee by Council will be contacted in mid-August. 

About 

To advance Council’s commitment to acknowledging and recognizing the International Decade for People of African Decent 2015-2024, the City of Victoria is establishing a new advisory committee to support the Decade’s three themes:

  • Recognition: Support efforts to recognize and celebrate the contributions of Black Victorians as part of the City's contributions to mark the decade.

  • Justice: Support efforts to promote equitable outcomes for Black Victorians on issues relating to policing. Designing, implementing and enforcing effective measures to eliminate the phenomenon popularly known as “racial profiling” and eliminating institutionalized stereotypes concerning people of African descent.

  • Development: Support efforts for positive outcomes for Black Victorians in area of housing, employment and entrepreneurship

Purpose

The purpose of the International Decade for People of African Descent (IDPAD) Advisory Committee is to provide Council with recommendations on the following:

  • The recommended approach to implementing the IDPAD proclamation within the City of Victoria and community at large, including the development of a three-year action plan
  • Receive and communicate out City activities and updates related to the IDPAD implementation to “parent” organizations the member represents, where applicable
  • Best practices to raise awareness in the general public about the heritage and culture of people of African descent and around the IDPAD broader goals and actions
  • Advise Council on emerging issues and trends of significance to Black communities as they relate to City services and programs through semi-annual reports
  • How to ensure the interests and needs of Black communities are reflected in City programs and service delivery.

The committee is also expected to engage people of African descent and other community members through a series of at least three public workshops and one town hall meeting, to include the ideas of the broader community of the work of the IDPAD Advisory Committee and the City of Victoria’s work in implementing the IDPAD proclamation.

 For more information, please read the Terms of Reference.

Eligibility

The Committee will be comprised of up to nine voting members of African descent, appointed by Council for just over a three-year term (September 2021 – December 2024). If possible: 

  • Three elder members, who self-identify and represent the wisdom of Black communities
  • Three youth members between the ages of 18 to 29
  • Three members that represent Black lead organizations and business 
  • Have knowledge or previous experience in racial equity and/or anti-discrimination work or a strong commitment to learn and contribute to this work
  •  Assume an allyship role in removing systemic barriers racialized and marginalized communities and the African diaspora encounter
  • Collectively reflect a range of interests of the Black community in fields such as, but not limited to:
    • Arts/media/sports representation/Black Identity
    • Access to justice and community safety
    • Education
    • Inclusion and Immigration
    • Black ownership/wealth
    • Access to affordable housing and shelter
    • Mental/physical health
    • Democratic engagement

Time Commitment

The IDPAD Advisory Committee will meet every month or at a frequency as determined appropriate by the Committee. Members should expect a minimum time commitment of approximately six hours per month for the first six months, including meeting time.

The first meeting of the IDPAD Advisory Committee will be September 2021. The IDPAD Advisory Committee will be disbanded at the end of 2024 to coincide with the conclusion of the International Decade for People of African Descent. 

Compensation

Committee members will receive an honorarium for their participation set at the rate equivalent to the Living Wage in British Columbia.

Background                                       

The City of Victoria joins the Government of Canada, several other Canadian cities as well as cities worldwide in acknowledging and recognizing the International Decade for People of African Descent.

The United Nations proclaimed 2015 to 2024 as the International Decade for People of African Descent to recognize that people of African descent represent a distinct group whose human rights must be promoted and protected.

Whether as descendants of the victims of the transatlantic slave trade or as more recent migrants, people of African descent constitute some of the poorest and most marginalized groups. Studies and findings by international and national bodies demonstrate that people of African descent still have limited access to quality education, health services, housing and social security.

The International Decade aims to celebrate the important contributions of people of African descent worldwide, advance social justice and inclusion policies, eradicate racism and intolerance, promote human rights, and assist in creating better, more prosperous communities, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals spearheaded by the United Nations. Learn more.