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LEGACY 2023: Executive Director Debbie Douglas

Black excellence is a force for change! Black Excellence can compel individuals to recognize and channel their power. It also acknowledges their brilliance and resilience in the face of countless systemic barriers. An individual who has done so in a powerful way is Debbie Douglas.

As Executive Director of the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants. Douglas’ work in the NGO sector has consistently addressed issues of equity and inclusion. She was the co-editor of Maka Juks: Writings by Queers of African Descent. As a community worker, Douglas co-founded Zami, a political and support group for LGBTI Black and Caribbean people in the early 1980’s. As a writer, she co-wrote and produced Canada's first docu-drama on women and AIDS. Douglas has promoted the creation of safe, welcoming spaces within the immigrant settlement and integration sector.  Douglas has utilized her many talents for the benefit of the African-Canadian community.

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. What is the definition of Black excellence as presented in the passage?
  2. Who is Debbie Douglas and what is her contribution to Black excellence?
  3. What is the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants and what is Debbie Douglas's role there?
  4. How has Debbie Douglas addressed issues of equity and inclusion through her work in the NGO sector?
  5. What is Maka Juks, and what was Debbie Douglas's role in it?
  6. What is Zami, and how has it supported the LGBTI Black and Caribbean community?
  7. What was Canada's first docu-drama on women and AIDS, and what role did Debbie Douglas play in its creation?
  8. How has Debbie Douglas promoted the creation of safe, welcoming spaces within the immigrant settlement and integration sector?
  9. What other talents has Debbie Douglas utilized for the benefit of the African-Canadian community?
  10. How can Debbie Douglas's example inspire others to use their talents and skills to bring about positive change for their communities?

CRITICAL THINKING QUESTIONS:

  1. How do Black immigrants in Canada navigate the challenges of integration and acculturation in Canadian society?
  2. What are the main barriers to accessing education, employment, and housing for Black immigrants in Canada?
  3. How do Black immigrants in Canada deal with the issue of discrimination and racism in the workplace and in their communities?
  4. How do Black immigrants in Canada address the lack of representation and inclusivity in Canadian politics and government?
  5. How do Black immigrants in Canada work to preserve and promote their cultural heritage and identity in Canada?
  6. How do Black immigrants in Canada deal with the lack of support and resources for newcomers and immigrants in Canada?
  7. How do Black immigrants in Canada address the lack of representation and inclusivity in Canadian media and popular culture?
  8. How can Black immigrants in Canada build and maintain social networks and community connections?
  9. How do Black immigrants in Canada deal with the issue of systemic discrimination in the criminal justice system?
  10. What steps can be taken to promote the inclusion and integration of Black immigrants in Canadian society?
  11. How can powerful Black people assist in the upliftment of their community?  Suggest programs or initiatives that they can create or lend support to in the Black community.
  12. What specific issues do members of the Black LGBTQ2S+ community face and need to overcome while pursuing excellence? How can people outside of this community assist?

 Website:

Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants.

https://ocasi.org/

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