CAGS Workshop Series for Graduate Students and Postdocs

Anti-Racism Response Training (ART)

Event Date:  Saturday November 6
Event Time: 12:00-3:00 PM (ET)

Event Location: Zoom


CAGS is excited to offer this important and timely 3 hour workshop designed to build awareness around issues of race and racism in Canadian higher education. This workshop will introduce attendees to the concepts of active versus passive witnessing, and help to instil a better understanding of the impacts of racist encounters. The workshop is premised on the active-witnessing model, in which participants will learn enhanced techniques for intervening and disrupting racism in their institutions and in their daily lives. Participants will have the opportunity to learn and practice a wide range of anti-racism response, and to share of their own. The workshop will be held over Zoom for a three-hour period in the afternoon on Saturday November 6th. The facilitators will conduct the session in English.

Developed by Dr. Ishu Ishiyama – and recently adapted and enhanced, including virtual adaptation, by Naomi Wolfe, Sanchit Mittal, and Thanh Tazumi – the ART Program uses a witness-centred approach to disrupting racism. This training is designed to encourage participants to shift from being frozen or silent bystanders to becoming active witnesses and, in doing so, to help disrupt racism and build safer and more inclusive communities.

In keeping with the commitments laid out in our Call to Action for an End to Racism in and through Graduate Education (2020), CAGS is making a limited number tickets available to Graduate Students and Postdocs from within our community of member institutions. Tickets will be sold for $35.00 CAD (no tax), and will include participation in the three-hour training session. CAGS is a registered charity, and all ticket proceeds will go towards covering the costs of the workshop series.

Tickets are available to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows/associates from CAGS member institutions, and will be sold until the capacity of the workshop has been reached. If needed, a second workshop will be created and held on Sunday November 7th from 12:00-3:00 PM (ET).

Registration closes on Wednesday, 3 November at 4:00 PM (ET).

About the Workshop

  • Consider the impacts of being a passive bystander vs. active witness
  • Gain greater empathy regarding the harmful impacts of racist encounters
  • Review four levels of witnessing
  • Explore four key categories of active witnessing
  • Learn and practice a wide range of anti-racism responses and share some of your own

PLEASE NOTE: Participant commitment to the whole series is highly recommended.


Meet the Facilitators

Thanh Tazumi (she/her/hers) and her family immigrated to Canada as refugees in 1984. After completing her BA in Psychology in 1996 she married her husband Mark Tazumi. Together they have two grown daughters. Thanh worked for a multicultural organization for 10 years, coordinating anti-racism, diversity, and organizational change projects. She coordinated the first anti-racism walk in Campbell River, in 1997 and formed a committee to continue this annual event until 2006. She has co-facilitated workshops on intercultural communication, diversity & inclusion, and Anti-racism Response Training. Thanh currently lives and works on the traditional territory of the Lekwiltok and E’iksan-K’ómoks peoples. She is aware of the history of racism in Canada and many of its impacts on Indigenous and other racialized peoples. She is committed to being an antiracist and working toward healing and reconciliation.

Naomi L. Wolfe (she/her/hers) is a mixed European settler Canadian, originally from Saskatchewan, who is grateful to reside on the unceded traditional territory of the E’iksan and K’omoks Peoples. Naomi’s start in anti-racism work began when she was a teen, as a member of an anti-racism youth group in Nashville, Tennessee, during the desegregation of schools through crosstown bussing. After 11 years in the USA and ten years living, studying and working in Guatemala, Naomi moved back to Canada, and eventually to Vancouver Island. Through her work with the Immigrant Welcome Centre and 29 years as ESL faculty at North Island College, Naomi gained a deep understanding of the barriers faced by her diverse community. Naomi facilitates A.R.T., intercultural communication, Theatre for Living, and Compassionate Listening (TCLP) workshops, and has presented at conferences in BC and internationally. Naomi greatly values collaborating with others to bring about a more just and inclusive society.

Sanchit Mittal (he/him/his) came to Canada as an international student; he holds two Master’s degrees. He has diverse experience in working with various marginalized communities, including LGBTQ2+ and refugees. With over seven years of experience in various Indian and Canadian organizations, living as an uninvited guest on the traditional territories of the Neutral, Anishinaabe, and Haudenosaunee peoples, Sanchit deeply values Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI), and is passionate about Truth and Reconciliation and Social Justice work, including Anti-Racism. Sanchit has co-facilitated many workshops including: LGBTQ2+ inclusion, Communications in Intercultural classrooms, Allyship, Microaggressions. Sanchit has worked in Vancouver Island University’s (VIU) International Education and served as the Vice President for SIETAR BC. Currently a Partnerships Manager at an Ontario-based Edu-Tech company, he is also an EDI Consultant for VIU.

Participant Testimonials

“The Anti-Racism Response Training is engaging, eye-opening, and educational. The facilitators' approach of presenting factual information paired with sharing personal stories helped to capture their diverse audience. Reflection exercises not only encouraged participants to examine themselves and racism, but they also prompted open discussions among participants. Highly recommended for anyone and everyone wanting to start taking steps against racism.” - Instructor, Vancouver Community College

“A white, settler woman with significant privilege, I knew that I had a lot to learn about racism in Canada and what I could do about it. Participating in this well-designed and delivered training exceeded my expectations over and over! Not only did I learn so much about racism in Canada, past and present, I also learned from the presenters and participants about how these experiences have impacted them so significantly. In the training we learned and practiced effective skills to respond to witnessing or experiencing racist encounters. I will no longer be a bystander, wishing I had the words or confidence to act when I see racism in any form. I can now stand-up and speak-out to address the issue at the time or when it is safe to do so. We must all make the decision and take action to stop racism and the Anti-Racism Response Training program provides the practical skills and confidence to do so!” - Executive Director, Volunteer Campbell River

“This training was so interesting and important and should be offered in all workplaces and institutions. If it is important to you and your organization to truly understand the history of racism, its implications today, and what to do and say to combat racism, I highly recommend this training.” – Instructor, Vancouver Community College

Sorry, registration for this event is now closed.

Please contact Ian Wereley at [email protected] for more information.