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Alberta Family Mediation Society [AFMS] is an organization that supports understanding between individuals in conflict and holds the dignity of every person in the highest regard.  All persons regardless of colour, race, culture, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, or financial circumstances deserve equal opportunities and fair treatment as guaranteed under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.  Unfortunately, we know this is not the reality faced by many in Canada today.

AFMS acknowledges that in Canada, there has been a long-standing struggle with issues of racism and discrimination in the form of denial, and in individual or group actions of violence and hate. This has systematically resided in the discriminatory structures, policies, and actions of the commercial, educational, legal, social, and governmental systems, put in place by, and to serve Canadians.

Racism and discrimination are undeniably part of our collective history. It is now time for us to work together to ensure that this has no place in our future or that of our children. We must work collaboratively to celebrate our differences and ensure that we all do what is necessary to move forward with respect, honesty, and humility to advance the principles of equality, unity, and truth.

Toward this end, AFMS affirms its commitment to respect the rights of all peoples in relation to their knowledge, ideas, cultural expressions and practices, and to ensure that our organization is better informed and equipped to work against racism and all forms of discrimination in our sector of society.  We are committed to learning how to best be an ally to all racialized groups in Canada and we will use our voice and position to best ensure that there is no place for racism, discrimination, and hatred within our professional sector. At AFMS, we support equity, diversity, inclusion and are working to ensure that our own processes support this commitment.

We recognize that being inclusive and disavowing racism and all forms of discrimination in our day-to-day work is insufficient.  We must go further and adopt a proactive anti-racist and anti-discriminatory approach. Wellness, conflict prevention and all forms of mediation are founded on principles of equal access to justice, procedural fairness, and the mitigation of power imbalances.  Speaking out and acting in ways that promote true inclusion, equality under the law and systemic fairness is who we are as an organization and who we should be as a society.

As we move forward, we acknowledge ownership of the past and promise to use the lessons of history to guide our organization towards a better understanding and future for all people.

 We share many of the same attitudes and sentiments as Family Mediation Canada [FMC] and thank them for allowing us to incorporate some of their statement into ours.

AFMS Board of Directors

October 2020