NAIDOC Week: How to be a good ally to First Nations people

The theme of NAIDOC Week is ‘Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!’ and one way to do this is being good ally to First Nations people experiencing racism.⁠

A good ally is someone who actively recognises and addresses racial inequality around them – whether it’s at school or in their workplace, in their community or online, or among family and friends.⁠

Being an ally is not about ‘saving’ people who are living with racism – it’s about being aware of inequality, calling it out where it exists, and above all listening to people who experience it, and elevating their voices. ⁠

Read through the suggestions on how to be a good ally from ⁠’Racism. It stops with me.’⁠

If you witness racism, say something
It’s essential to call out racism, whether it’s racist jokes, stereotypes or negative attitudes. If someone says something inappropriate, speak up. Silence condones racism.

Don’t expect First Nations people to educate you
Allies know First Nations history through self-education. First Nations people are only about 3% of the population, and have different levels of knowledge about culture history. Therefore, it’s not reasonable to expect First Nations people to educate you.

Appreciate the diversity among First Nations people
First Nations people are not all the same. Differences may be based on age, gender, connection to culture, geography and nation. And remember, differences don’t make people more or less Indigenous.

Stick with First Nations people even when times are tough
Championing Indigenous equity isn’t always easy. An ally stands with us at all times, not just when it is easy or fun.

Promote First Nations voices
Allies allow First Nations people to speak for themselves. Centring First Nations people on issues impacting them means making sure that their voices are heard.

Be prepared to not be part of the decision making
First Nations people live their culture, they experience the world as a First Nations person and know their communities best. Therefore, a good ally appreciates First Nations people need to make the decisions impacting them.

Don’t go at it alone
First Nations people should be leading events or issues involving them. This means non-Indigenous people need to support First Nations people to take the leadership role.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: