Old Ottawa South Community Association

Terms of Reference

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The Old Ottawa South Community Association (OSCA) recognizes its dynamic role within the community. The Board of Directors of the OSCA approved in July 2020, the creation of a Diversity and Inclusion Working Group. The purpose of the Working Group is to engage multiple perspectives and experiences within the community of Old Ottawa South to inform the operationalization of OSCA’s active commitment to fair and equitable provision, implementation, and impact of services, programs and policies.


  • To establish a space for dialogue on discrimination within the community and sharing views on ways to mitigate discrimination.
  • To recognize and make systemic changes that dismantle barriers preventing equitable access within the community association and OSCA’s programs and services, as well as the wider community it serves, and develop strategies to address these issues in a meaningful and relevant way.
  • Foster organizational excellence through inclusivity that builds capacity to meet future challenges.

Actions / Meetings

  • To discuss the scope of the diversity and inclusion working group
  • To design and set up an anonymous feedback channel for members of the community and brainstorm engagement strategies
  • To examine the diversity policy mission and/or statement that resonates with the OSCA and/or the community at large
  • To consider the value of establishing a diversity committee objectives and possible activities it could undertake
  • To brainstorm meaningful ways to integrate the values of the policy statement throughout the organization and community
  • To review and analyse anonymous feedback and discuss draft report and feedback from board members and community members


  • Community engagement and data gathering through an anonymous feedback channel and HR survey, among others.
  • A report to the Board of Directors of the Old Ottawa South Community Association containing data-driven recommendations for OSCA to consider adopting and implementing. The report could include, but not be limited to including, a diversity and inclusion policy or statement; HR guidelines; recommendations on training opportunities; community-actions and activities.

Guiding Definitions

The unequal treatment of members of various groups based on race, gender, social class, sexual orientation, physical ability, religion and other categories.
Refers to fairness and equality in outcomes, not just in supports and opportunity.
Genuine embracement of traditionally excluded individuals and/or groups into processes, activities, decision/policy making in a way that shares power.
A framework for understanding how aspects of identity (e.g., sex, gender, race, class, sexuality, ability, etc.) “intersect” in people’s individual lives, in the cultures and communities of which they are a member, and in the institutions that structure their life opportunities. Experiences such as oppression and marginalization can be intensified
Lived Experience:
knowledge and impressions about the world gained through direct, first-hand involvement in everyday events
The everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, which communication hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership.
Unearned social power afforded to all members of a dominant group by formal and informal societal institutions.

Guiding principles

  • To be deeply consultative, transparent, open
  • Endeavor to include those who are highly affected but have low influence
  • To allow the process to be iterative, organic and unfold naturally over time
  • To be data-driven

Ground rules

  • Be open and curious
  • Check your (unconscious) biases
  • Be an empathetic listener
  • Recognize your identity when you speak
  • @safe space

Members of the working group

There are eight members of the working group, and their bios are attached as Appendix A.

  1. Virginia Asante, Chair
  2. Dr. Justine Joseph, Member
  3. Deborah Gomes, Member
  4. Larry Menard, Member
  5. Saira David, Member
  6. Neena Kushwaha, Member
  7. Shehryar Sarwar, Member
  8. Fatuma Hussein, Member

Share your views

Email the WG at diversityandinclusion@oldottawasouth.ca

Last modified on Saturday, 28 November 2020 17:01

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