SKETCH is committed to learning, “unlearning” and challenging oppressive systems in our society in partnership and allyship with individuals, communities and movements working to address and eradicate the harmful and damaging impacts of these systems.
Over many conversations with young people, staff and partners, SKETCH has been developing it’s Equity Strategy, to guide programs, policies, hiring, and importantly, how we co-create with the community to make social change.
We hope that you will engage in dialogue with us around these issues so that we might work together toward justice and collective liberation.
Photos by Glamma. @GlammaGirlSwag
To begin, this page updates you on our current actions to address Anti-Black Racism within SKETCH, arts and culture and within the broader community. We initiated this when we, like many, were called-in by Black-led communities to stand against rising police brutality against Black and Indigenous peoples all around us. These actions are just a start.
We stand together with the brave and creative leadership of young Black Artists and Activists who CREATE despite ongoing violence and injustice and who are ADVOCATING for change.
On June 3, 2020, SKETCH (re)committed to examining and activating our role as an ally and accomplice to address ongoing violence of Anti-Black racism, oppression, and discrimination in our organization, in our sector and in systems, in Toronto and in society generally.
We want to be accountable to Black youth artists and staff of SKETCH, and the Black community at large by taking action to ensure that folks are supported, uplifted, and their voices amplified as they lead all of us toward justice and collective liberation.
We said we would:
In partnership with Platform A organizational partners, we issued a letter on June 3 calling to Arts Funding Bodies to develop a Black Arts Fund: to increase support to Black-led arts projects and initiatives; and to support long-term employment for Black arts and culture workers; we advocated for changes to make granting programs more welcoming and accessible to Black artists; and to ensure Black-led infrastructure and decision-making for Black Arts Funding. We’ll be following up on these recommendations in the coming months to push for budget changes as the city and council’s draft their 2021 budgets
Please feel free to write to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or contributions.
Photos by Glamma. @GlammaGirlSwag
Non-Black community members of SKETCH can take action by:
We will keep you updated on what we’re learning and doing.
Stay safe, Be well, and Let’s Keep up the Push.
SKETCH studios at 180 Shaw Street will remain closed to public access until further notice. We are forced in this time of pandemic to rework and consider our sustainability given public health priorities and resources. We will keep you posted on new designs in September.
Connect here for wellness supports.
We've launched our Equity at SKETCH Web page to be in dialogue with you about our Equity goals.
Black activists and communities everywhere are working hard to lead all society to call out and authentically address the violent impacts of White Supremacy in policing, justice, education, health, community and in all systems and infrastructures across Turtle Island (North America). Anti-Black racism is deeply embedded in every fabric of our society. This, as well as our violent colonial legacy of Indigenous erasure, constant gender discrimination and violence, and the violence and mistreatment of those in the disability community, are pervasive pressing truths that we need to face and address, daily, to make change in real ways. We need boldness, energy, honesty, deep listening and accountability, to generate sustained action and inversions of power in the immediate, medium and long term.
What can a community-engaged arts organization in Toronto like us do, to take up its role in this critical renaissance of justice? Join us in learning together with us, what this means.
SKETCH is deeply committed to supporting, learning from and amplifying the brave and creative leadership of young Black Artists and Activists. Check out Art in Pandemic and be inspired by the incredible work of young artists creating during this time.
We call on the Arts Councils to create a Black Artists Fund to support Black Artists and Black Arts and Culture Organizations, recognizing and investing in their leadership in arts and culture, and in building fair and inclusive communities.
Follow us at @SKETCHToronto, and reach out if you have any questions at email@example.com.
Please support us to be a just, accountable and vibrant arts platform for young people on the margins! We need your help now more than ever!