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Coffee conversation: Diversity and inclusion

The Coffee Conversation on Thursday was well attended and we have made a good start at identifying some of the things that make members feel excluded and/or included. Thanks are extended to everyone who completed the survey also. Meeting outcomes are summarised below:

  1. One of our members responded to the survey that “I feel like I matter”. Alexis affirmed that this is what PEG wants for all of its members. She also noted that all respondents have had experiences of inclusivity and exclusivity. The terms are not mutually exclusive and can be used to understand the ethos or culture of PEG and what we may need to change.
  2. We have called the initiative D&I without the “E” for equity quite intentionally because PEG is a membership organisation that relies on volunteers. This brings a different dynamic to equity than in profit-driven companies that are required to meet statutory regulations, etc. Nonetheless, ultimately PEG needs to ensure that its representation suggests equity too and we do this by understanding the lived experiences of others.
  3. Alexis emphasised that we each have our own experiences and feelings. When people express these, it is not for anyone to tell them that their feelings are not valid or true. It is essential to remember this as we move forward, listen to what members have to say and understand their points of view (which may be completely different to yours). The concept “lived experience” and people’s subjective stories must be heard and sought to be understood. We are not all the same and do not experience everything similarly. Therefore, we cannot tell others that what they feel is correct or incorrect.
  4. Members expressed a sense of exclusion as a result of the following:
    1. ATE process
    2. Extent of social interaction at in-person events
    3. Members who are in regions that are not represented
    4. Range of presenters: have we explored other skill sets and the depth of skill among more of our members
    5. Racial undertones and divisive interactions which appear to condone negative behaviour; also a lack of response to such incidents
    6. Historical culture/systemic dynamics that are difficult to talk about which are still present
    7. Feelings of inadequacy – does PEG perpetuate this?

We recorded the meeting and the link is included below. Please note that the AI seems to have taken the liberty of drafting its own summaries, not all of which are accurate or correct. For this reason, if there are any questions, please email me. Thank you to everyone for participating in this process – one which I am sure we will see develop positively for all of PEG.

Coffee conversation recording here. Passcode: !Yeb9Pjg

13 July, 2023 @ 15:30 - 17:00 Africa/Johannesburg at Online (Zoom) by PEG | Coffee conversations Third quarter Zoom

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