June 25, 2020 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Written by Chloe Balmer, Communications Intern

Black Lives Matter (BLM) is an organization and global movement campaigning against violence and systemic racism towards Black people. Emily Collins ‘20, a recent graduate from King’s Honours Specialization in Social Justice and Peace Studies (SJPS), is passionate about the BLM movement and other human rights issues. She led a project, with the help of her peers, entitled “A Guide to Advocacy: Where do we go from here? Black Lives Matter, Oppression and Activism.” It provides readings that shed light on the history of anti-Black racism, privilege and power, as well as intersectionality and oppression. The goal of the project is to create a community resource to support and defend victims of racism.

The Guide to Advocacy aims to provide context and education as a starting point to those who wish to learn more about the movement. It presents historical background, definitions, and more to raise awareness of previous and existing race issues in Canada and around the world.

Collins says they want to “amplify the work that Black people have analyzed and published” by promoting resources that have been created by Black artists, scholars, and community members. Collins was joined by seven of her peers, all King’s students and alumni, to help put together the Guide to Advocacy: Fiacre Batera ‘19, Kaitlin Birch, Kaitlyn Dyson, Nyema Reiz, Madison Lausanne, Nichole Loewen, and Joshua Harry. The group also received guidance from King’s Social Justice and Peace Studies faculty members, including Assistant Professor Dr. Thomas Malleson, Associate Professor Dr. Allyson Larkin and course instructor, Klaire Gain ‘14.

The authors of the Guide to Advocacy urge future students to consider the SJPS program of study for themselves. Students involved in the project received email correspondence and guidance from faculty members and want to acknowledge the ongoing support from SJPS faculty. The group especially wants to thank Dr. Malleson for his encouragement and advice throughout the creation of this project.

BLM originated in 2013 and has earned worldwide support and extensive media coverage.

The BLM movement exists as a hashtag on social media platforms and it is often the inspiration for protests, marches, and other public demonstrations demanding change to oppressive systems. Recent global protests were triggered by the death of George Floyd, a Black man killed by police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Global interest has prompted people to become further educated on the history of oppression and violence towards Black people, in turn shedding light on the unjust realities faced by the Black community.

Those who wish to access the Guide to Advocacy can do so here. Collins is welcoming questions about the project at ecolli4@uwo.ca.

Media coverage

The London Free Press: Western students craft 'advocacy guide' for Black Lives Matter movement 

AM980: King's University College grad creates Guide to Advocacy inspired by BLM movement

To learn more about studying Social Justice and Peace Studies at King’s, please visit https://www.kings.uwo.ca/academics/social-justice-and-peace-studies/

Image credit: "Holding on To Hope" by Johnny Bryan @pokesandpaint @youngblackartists