Inclusion Library

Helen Housby listens to headphones

Sharing your inclusion library is an opportunity to broaden your perspective across all aspects of inclusion and diversity and encourage your teammates, colleagues and friends to do the same.

Sharing what you’ve been listening to, reading and watching with others will offer them a new experience and understanding that they might not have been exposed to otherwise. Greater understanding of our different experiences will create greater unity between us.

Aliyah Zaranyika, David Parsons and Hannah Williams reflect on their personal inclusion journeys, highlighting what they’ve been listening to, reading and watching.

Aliyah Zaranyika, England U21 squad

I have one more chromosome than you. So what?–TED Talks, Karen Gaffney

“Karen Gaffney, the first person with Down’s syndrome to swim the English Channel, discusses the progress that has been made by activists to promote the inclusion of people with Down’s syndrome into all aspects of society and the amazing things that they have achieved as a result. She emphasises how vital it is to continue this progress.

“As a black girl growing up, particularly in sport, I have always been made aware of the barriers that I was likely to face and have always been prepared to tackle them. I have, however, been fortunate to grow up with role model athletes who I can identify with and therefore look up to which has allowed me to believe that what I want to achieve is possible. We’ve always heard/been told that you can’t be what you can’t see, and this TED talk has heightened my awareness that, for many marginalised groups, the struggle to be seen is an uphill battle; but, as we continue to increase the exposure and inclusion of these groups, we will increase the opportunity for better understanding and appreciation. Exposure and inclusion breed true understanding and the realisation of the amazing things that can be achieved.”

David Parsons, England Netball Performance Director

Rebel Ideas by Matthew Syed

“This is a really excellent read that underlines the importance of diversity of thought, background and personality in teams and groups, in order to strengthen the likelihood of making good business or high performance decisions. And that was the key message that I took away – we shouldn’t approach diversity from a position of tolerance, or even just because we feel it is the right and fair approach; we should seek diversity in our teams because it is by having a range of inputs from a wide variety of perspectives that we can make the strongest and most robust decisions. As a leader, that isn’t always comfortable – deliberately encouraging disagreement and challenge; but it is by investing in difference that we are more likely to arrive at the right outcome, if not in the shortest time!!”

The Sound of Metal

“A quite brilliant film in which Riz Ahmed plays a drummer in a heavy metal band whose life is turned upside down by fast approaching deafness and follows his desire for surgery to correct his perceived disability and to return to the world he knew before. The key messages for me were the subtle differences between being able to hear and being able to listen, and how there is so much we can learn without the need for sound. My perceptions of disability were also challenged – have I been viewing those with disabilities as ‘missing something’ or as not quite having the privileges that I have, and maybe there’s a better lens through which to view disability; namely through seeing and valuing difference rather than seeing those with a disability as being a poorer version of our, supposedly, fully functioning selves.”

Hannah Williams, England U21 squad

The Hate U Give

“I decided to read ‘The Hate U Give’ last year during the first lockdown. It tells the story of Starr, a young black girl living in America, who witnesses her best friend being killed by a white cop. The novel explores the themes of police brutality and criminalisation of black people in America, highlighting the ever-present stereotypes they’re labelled with and the systemic criminalisation within the police. Personally, the novel really illustrated the everyday struggles of being black and opened my eyes to the concept of white privilege. Even though I will never truly understand what it is like to be a young black teenager, it has made me recognise that in order for any kind of change to happen simply being ‘not-racist’ is not good enough, but that we must be actively anti-racist in our behaviours, our actions and how we use our voice.”

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