There is increasing awareness of the importance of broadening our lens regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). So embrace the small wins you can start today but focus on the strategic changes within your organization and industry to truly make a difference in creating a more inclusive snow sports industry.

10 Tactical Practical Take-Aways to Becoming a Diversity Champion

  1. Remember you are only an expert in your own experience.
  2. Introduce yourself with your pronouns: he/him, she/her, they/them.
  3. Include a land acknowledgement at events and meetings: native-land.ca.
  4. Diversify your content: imagery, stories, writers, contributors.
  5. Mentor or coach someone who doesn’t have the same lived experience as you; it’s the best way to diversify your team and friendship group!
  6. Think of Culture ADD vs Culture FIT.
  7. Educate yourself and others on current DEI issues and trends.
  8. Create brave spaces – by making them safe spaces.
  9. Embrace differences can lead to innovation.
  10. Support, celebrate and advocate for diverse organizations, communities, and leaders.

Presentation Highlights

  1. By 2036 in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal, immigrants and children of immigrants will represent 45 – 81% of the urban populations and Canada will reach a ‘minority’ majority as a nation.1 You may not ‘see it’ in your neighbourhood, but the trend is happening, and you just may not be reaching folks.
  2. The MEC case study revealed an untapped opportunity to make the outdoors more accessible to all people and reduce barriers to participation. Visible minorities and people under the rainbow umbrella were found to have a high propensity for activity in certain sectors that were important to MEC and illuminated opportunities for change. This included:
    1. Reflecting diversity in age, gender, physical abilities in marketing materials;
    2. Creating and publicly posting a DEI pledge;
    3. Ensuring their marketing investments truly represented the diversified audiences;
    4. Changing to gender-neutral washrooms and changing the sign on wheelchair accessibility and/or family washrooms to include ‘All Genders’;
    5. Incorporating gender respectful language into marketing and communications;
    6. Reflect on what “EPIC” ski experience is for different people. It will be very different from the able-bodied powder seeker to the adapted skier, from the seasoned Canadian skier to the new immigrant experience the mountain for the first time;
    7. Elevating and celebrating diversity in the lived and online experiences for guests and future guests.
  3. We all need to think ‘now’ about who we are marketing to and be reflective of those engaging in our spaces. There is a risk of relevancy if businesses don’t embrace this opportunity.
  4. Create an inclusive environment, and diversity will follow.
  5. Single actions are a great way to begin, but organizations need a strategy, plan, employee engagement and ensuring that everyone feels safe, valued, seen and heard.