In St Helens we are working to create a town where everybody is
welcome regardless of disability, race, religion, gender or sexual
orientation. A simple choice to treat others as you would wish to
be treated yourself, can make a huge difference to lives of people
who face discrimination in their every day life. One kind act, one
supportive word, one person willing to learn, can bring start a
sequence of positive changes.
The Safer St Helens Partnership is asking everybody who works,
lives or visits the town to be an ally to those who may experience
discrimination, be that at home, in the workplace or out in
public . Even though they do not belong to a specific group, an
ally will make an effort to understand the struggles of another's
circumstances. People from the different groups should also be an
ally to each other.
Ally - someone who helps and
supports other people who are part of a
group that is treated badly or unfairly,
although they are not themselves a member of this
Being an ally doesn't mean that you identify with the
experiences or injustices of the oppressed group, but it does mean
that you will stand with them and for them in the face of
How to be an ally
- Speak up in your own social circles - it starts with your own
family and friends, it may feel uncomfortable at first, but you may
just say something that changes the way others think about their
choice of words that could be hurtful.
- Learn from your mistakes - nobody is perfect, what we thought
was acceptable in the past has changed, it's OK as long as we learn
- Amplify the voices of the minority groups, think how you use
your social media or voice in work or social settings to represent
- Not just for show - don't support the groups for one day for
kudos on social media, be consistant with your support.
- Mirror people's language they use to describe themselves. How
they pronounce their name or what pronouns they use.
- Acknowledge religious or cultural holidays and life
- Encourage participation - support anybody who is feeling left
out to speak up or become involved in an activity, work exercise or
group and consider what barriers may be causing the problem.
- Accepting your privilege - we are not all created equal.
Accepting the reality of 'bias' privilege - This kind of
'privilege' is not linked to wealth or class. Experiencing
'bias' privilege doesn't mean you are a bad person, or that you
have not faced struggles in your life. Most people who
experience 'bias' privilege don't even know that it happens.
The experience of 'bias 'privilege' means that your
circumstance, opportunities, and choices have not been
disadvantaged, or made more difficult by stereotypical judgements
about your abilities, merit and worth, not based on the facts about
who you are as an individual, but based solely on widely held
negative generalised opinions about aspects of your identity or
- Not being recruited because an employer could not pronounce
your name, even though you were the best candidate.
- Being unable to acess to a venue because you are
- Having a constant fear that your children will be abused
because of their race or religion.
- Not daring to hold hands with somebody you love in public for
fear of abuse or attack.
One kind act, one supportive word, one person willing to learn
and change, can start a sequence of positive changes that will make
our town a better place to be for everybody.