The Centre for Critical Qualitative Health Research (CQ) condemns anti-Black racism and discrimination. CQ’s mission is to critically analyze the possibilities and consequences of knowledge production in the health sciences, fulfilling this mandate through two interconnected aims—graduate/continuing education and methodological innovation. As an academic Centre advocating for critical reflexivity concerning knowledge production, we acknowledge the need to analyse our own history as a predominantly white space and fully engage with anti-racist scholarship, theory, pedagogy and methodologies.
We recognize that this statement is late in the wake of recent events, including the unjust deaths of Regis Korchinski-Paquet and D’Andre Campbell in Canada, and George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery in the United States, among others. We recognize this lateness could be interpreted as a lack of urgency and commitment to address issues surrounding anti-Black racism, and for that we are deeply sorry.
Over the last weeks, we have been listening, observing and reflecting on how to move forward with a renewed commitment towards health equity, social justice and decolonizing methodologies and more importantly, with an explicit anti-racist approach to all dimensions of the Centre’s work.
We offer this statement of solidarity fully recognizing the dangers of performative allyship or of rushing to be “on board” without an action agenda. For this reason, we include the following immediate actions we are taking as a Centre:
- Reaching out to and building relationships with Black leadership in health research; co-leading anti-racist initiatives with Black leaders in health research, including our planning as a Centre;
- Making anti-racist resources available through our website, which we will continue to generate and collect in collaboration with Black, Indigenous and other racialized researchers and scholars;
- Working with CQ instructors to conduct a comprehensive review of CQ’s curriculum to increase anti-racist course content and amplify the scholarship and research of Black, Indigenous and racialized scholars;
- Re-visiting and planning our seminar series to support scholarship and research from Black, Indigenous and other racialized scholars, including a special CQ seminar series to engage with anti-racist scholarship, theory and methodologies;
- Creating and funding a community of practice project aimed at critical reflexivity towards decentering whiteness within CQ spaces and amplifying Black, Indigenous and other racialized perspectives, research and scholarship; and
- Restructuring our Dissertation Award Committee to include Black, Indigenous and other racialized academics.
In addition to these immediate actions we will develop long-term plans and actions for the Centre, beginning with our bi-annual Academic Fellows meetings. Planning outcomes and new initiatives will continue to be made public through CQ’s website and bi-monthly newsletters. This initial statement of solidarity to address and dismantle anti-Black racism in academia and society is offered with humility and openness, and we welcome ongoing feedback and conversation.
You can download the pdf version of this statement here