Community Leadership Forum
Thursday Feb 28, 2019 07:00 PM
Thursday, Feb 28, 2019 09:00 PM

Most of us understand that we can’t discriminate against someone and treat them differently because of their race, sex, or religion.

However, what happens when discrimination is "unconscious"?

Unconscious biases are social stereotypes that we may have about certain individuals without our own conscious awareness. Without knowing it, we all have unconscious beliefs about various social and identity groups. Our unconscious biases influence everything from who we choose to be friends with, who we hire to babysit our kids, to the employee we promote and who we don’t.

Through this program we will discuss how to identify unconscious bias and the science behind our thought process and why we may “instinctively” make certain choices. We will also learn how to “retrain” our brains and develop tactics to combat it while helping to create an environment within our community, schools and workplaces where those around us feel included, supported and valued. This program will also focus on the role we can each play in becoming an "Upstander" in our community by taking an active role to interrupt bias and stereotyping. We will focus on “conscious inclusion” and the everyday actions each of us can take to make a big difference in creating an inclusive environment.

This program will:

  • Explain what is unconscious bias and the science behind why it exists.
  • Educate participants about how our assumptions about social identities (race, sex, age, sexual orientation, religion, disability, etc.) that – without our awareness or conscious control shape our likes and dislikes and our judgments about ability,potential and character.
  • Provide examples of how unconscious bias presents in the workplace and community at large.
  • Provide an interactive session on the Implicit Association test along with other studies that help bring our biases to light.
  • Explain the differences between an Upstander vs. a Bystander, and emphasize the value in creating a culture where others are empowered to speak up.
  • Outline strategies an Upstander can take.
  • Educate participants about inclusive leadership and how inclusive cultures are the keys to achieving a positive impact.


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Summit Speech School, 705 Central Ave. #1 New Providence

Jennifer Cooney