I was working at home the other day, and looked over at my pups thinking about how important the safety of my family is to me. I don’t think I make a single decision that doesn’t consider their safety.
And at that moment, this thought crossed my mind, not for the first time, but on a day following the senseless death and horrifying murder of George Floyd by a police officer. My black family and friends, the black community have no idea what this level of safety is.
I am not much of a grand stander, and I have no reason to begin now. But anyone who knows me will tell you that I am not afraid to stand up for what I believe in. My work will prove itself over time as I believe most of my life’s work has. I am sad to say I have been complacent when it comes to racism, I haven’t done enough. I believed that by living by what’s in my heart was enough. I’m not making excuses. But I’m starting now. I’m paying attention, I’m aware, I’m reading, I’m active.
As coaches, we have the unique opportunity to help create change and to try to influence how people view the systems at work. Because it’s obvious our systems don’t work, not for all.
As the people in this country continue to fight to tear down the systems that support racism, we are in a position to be not only allies but also to create a safe environment to listen, to educate and help build a relationship of trust for better communication and honest conversations.
And it’s not only an opportunity, it’s a responsibility for us to utilize our voice and skills to have conversations about race, violence and how we can work together to end racism and change lives where we all can all feel the same kind of safety I have the privilege of knowing. The privilege that on most days myself and my family will live with a sense of freedom and will never feel a lack of security because of the color of our skin.
Everyone deserves to feel safe in their own country, and this country isn’t great until this is a truth for all people.