Toronto Community Housing provides update on progress towards the Confronting Anti-Black Racism Strategy’s key outcomes during 2022
Today, Toronto Community Housing (TCHC) is providing updates on the success of efforts to achieve the Confronting Anti-Black Racism (CABR) Strategy in 2022. The CABR strategy captures the changes needed to systematically address anti-Black racism across TCHC, both as an employer and as a social housing provider, and measure success in making that change.
In 2022, the Centre for Advancing the Interests of Black People (the Centre) intentionally laid the foundation and took corrective action toward addressing the historical and ongoing harms of anti-Black racism at TCHC. The Centre focused on fostering relationships with external and internal stakeholders, so they can generate more awareness about the Centre's function and increase the organization's capacity to dismantle anti-Black racism. Barry Thomas was appointed as the new Centre Director in December 2022.
By the end of its first year, The Centre has achieved a number of important milestones:
- Investing more than $40,000 through the Centre Funds. This investment created new opportunities for 433 tenants across eight communities to develop and implement Black-led initiatives and programs that met the community's needs.
- Engaging tenants to discuss decent and fair housing, understanding their needs and concerns about their community.
- Partnering with the Black Creek Community Health Centre to develop the Black Business Essentials workshops and connecting 45 Black tenants to receive free entrepreneurship training and micro-credentials through York University.
- Hosting a partnership forum in October 2022 with representatives from 30 organizations to discuss the potential collaboration in addressing anti-Black racism in the city and building services that better serve Black tenants.
- Engaging TCHC youth in a 12-week long program to review race-based data and Toronto Police Services tactics with an anti-Black racism lens, from a youth perspective, ending in a roundtable meeting with Chief Myron Demkiw and other Toronto Police Services staff.
- Teaming up with Human Resources to update TCHC's recruitment program to include an anti-Black racism lens — taking steps to increase the representation and retention of Black workers and professionals at TCHC.
- Developing a community centered crisis response toolkit to support communities affected by acts of violence, putting tenants in control of the types of support that best meet their needs.
- Receiving 103 cases related to anti-Black racism and resolving 25 per cent of the cases.
- Completing more than 600 hours of staff training and developing six training modules for business units.
These achievements and the reactions of TCHC staff were captured in a year-end summary video, created to bring the CABR Strategy to life in more detail.
The CABR Strategy is a multi-year plan intended to drive institutional change, establish strategic and sustained relationship building among diverse groups, impact service delivery and influence change through multidisciplinary research, analysis, and strategic narrative. It is aligned to eight major outcomes that need to be achieved to successfully confront anti-Black racism in social housing. Progress towards these outcomes is an indicator of success in confronting anti-Black racism.
"Toronto Community Housing is transforming itself. This is a cultural change that we will continually invest in, growing the culture of the organization. We will work to achieve the eight major outcomes of the Strategy, checking and re-checking our progress every year to ensure that we are succeeding in our efforts, always are reaching for the next improvement. This year's success shows me that we are building momentum, aligning the organization behind our Strategy, and I can't wait to see what we achieve next year."
- Jag Sharma, President and CEO, Toronto Community Housing
"We are not giving people the opportunity to participate to the full extent of their capabilities in our society. Young Black boys and girls need to see bigger, better opportunities for them in the future and we need to knock down the barriers that stand in their way. The Confronting Anti-Black Racism Strategy is the key that can help to unlock their potential and this year's results show that Toronto Community Housing is headed in the right direction."
- Barry Thomas, Director (Acting), Centre for Advancing the Interests of Black People, Toronto Community Housing