Practising Equalism in Organisations

Roots of Change podcast with Sam Chavez

One of the questions people often ask about equalism is how it actually works. Mission Equality co-founder Sharon Hurley Hall talked to Sam Chavez of the Roots of Change podcast to share some insight. As part of that, we touched on the recurring issue of equality vs equity…

Sam: A lot of what Mission Equality talks about is the difference between equity and equality … can you explain a little more about that?

Sharon: We're actually not working towards equity. We take equity steps to redress historical and current imbalances and inequities. But what we're working towards is equality, which is where everybody gets their needs met as of right. Everybody is able to thrive. You know where we're not ruining our planet and our communities. We're not exploiting people all the time. You know, all of those things. So equality is that world.

I often talk about that Star Trek world where people get their needs met. You look on the bridge of the of the Enterprise, and you see a guy from a water planet with effectively a mini water bubble so that he can continue to do his work. And … the androids have what they need, and everybody gets their needs met, and that is not considered worthy of note. You know they just do that, and then they all come together, and they do what they need to do. So for us equality is the goal. Equality is what we're striving for. Equity steps are important to redress those imbalances, but they're not the ultimate goal.

Sam: When I think of equity, I think of it kind of as plugging the dam of the white supremacist world that we live in. You know, it's protecting the people that are on the ground. But ultimately we have to talk about both plugging the hole and building the future that we want.

Sharon: We have to think about what comes next. We have to think about what got us here. We have to think about what we change, so that future generations don't end up in the same mess that we're in now.

You can't just plug the gap, right? You can't stick your finger in the dyke. Because what happens when you take it out? You have to have mended it. You have to have repaired stuff … Okay. we know what got us here. We know that capitalism is evil. We know that the quest for profit at the expense of people and planet has resulted in great harm to millions, if not billions of people.

We know that the capitalist project is basically a failed project because we're destroying our habitat. And we're destroying our ability, the ability for most people to thrive.

And so, what do we do? And you know, this is not saying that we're going to get everything right immediately. That we're going to have all the answers. But those are the questions that we have to be asking, right? The questions are not only about how can we redress those imbalances, but how can we create a world where those imbalances don't exist any more.

You can listen to the whole episode on the link below:

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