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Words Matter

How to evolve your anti-racism communications

We’ve been talking about anti-racism a lot lately as a team and with our own clients.
By:
Oct 8, 2020

The language around anti-racism is changing fast.

Inclusive and respectful communication is important, and it’s something brands need to pay careful attention to as communication evolves.

Here are the key considerations to keep in mind as you evolve you own language and writing.

Capitalization is important.

When writing about race or groups of people who belong to a specific racial group, become familiar with the current rules of capitalization.

Example: In tthe past year, many editorial guidelines have evolved to capitalize “Black” included Associated Press. Some are divided on the capitalization of “White”.

Color consciousness promotes anti-racism.

Being color-conscious means being aware of the depth that comes with individual lived experiences should be honored, not minimized, in the language we use.

No hyphens, please.

Hyphenated terms like “Asian-American” or “Black-Canadian” suggest a sense of “otherness” and that someone isn’t truly a citizen of their country.

Committing to lifelong learning matters.

These references have been helpful starting points for us as we continue to learn:

Associated Press Stylebook

apstylebook.com

Diversity Style Guide

diversitystyleguide.com

“Communicatting on Race and Racial Economic Equity”, Prosperity Now

prosperitynow.org

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