November 2022 IDEA Challenge

Inclusion and Allyship in our Coworking Communities

November’s IDEA Challenge is facilitated by Oren Salomon.

The IDEA Project is a global initiative aimed at developing Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility (IDEA) within coworking and collaborative spaces. Each month, we will host a challenge that assists you in broadening your understanding of IDEA, whilst giving clear actions for you to take to develop IDEA within your space.

Challenge #22 – Inclusion and Allyship in Coworking Communities

Over the past few months we’ve witnessed hate speech and antisemitic remarks being amplified internationally across social channels and mainstream media. In particular, American celebrities Kanye West and Kyrie Irving have made blatantly antisemitic remarks on public platforms.

Discrimination, prejudice, and hostility are never acceptable, but when celebrities and public figures engage in this kind of antisemitic dialogue, it only emboldens white supremacists and neo-nazis to do the same. Their words can incite real violence and hate crimes against Jewish people. White supremacy needs to be dismantled, in all of its forms.

Some of us might believe that the atrocities of the Holocaust and antisemitic beliefs are in the past – but as our November IDEA Challenge host Oren Salomon explains – this has been a reality historically, and the threat of violence and persecution continues to exist for Jewish people today. 

We can’t remain silent. These conversations are challenging, but important to have and to understand. And we need to understand the nuances in order to eliminate all forms of hate and oppression.

This month we are challenging you to have the difficult, or sensitive conversations that need to be had. In your families, in your coworking communities, and in your neighbourhoods. 

Oren also reminds us that when we act in allyship and when we operate in inclusive ways – even as we are doing tasks like ordering food for an event – we can apply these practices across our membership. We might be thinking about ways to be inclusive for our Jewish coworking members at Christmas time, but we can also think of ways to be inclusive for our Hindu members during Hanukkah. When we are thinking about who feels like they belong in our spaces and who doesn’t, we want you to consider all the intersections and layers of the religious and ethnic identities of your members.

We might commit today to practice allyship with Jewish people, and yet we can also apply these practices throughout our coworking communities, practicing allyship to our Indigenous members, to our migrant members, to our disabled members, and welcoming all of our members in an inclusive way.

This conversation touches on a lot of themes – exclusion, fear, ignorance, racism, and the Jewish identity, but Oren also reminds us that at the heart of this heavy conversation is a fairly simple solution. Treat each any every person as exactly that – one unique human being – and treat them the way they want to be treated.

So that is what we will ask you to reflect upon this month:
What does it mean to practice allyship to your members, and to anyone else who may be feeling excluded from your community? 
Does your code of conduct or membership agreement outline your IDEA policies or commitments?
Are your hiring practices inclusive? (See Additional Resource
How might you think and act more inclusively within your coworking community?

There will be no group IDEA discussion in November and we encourage you to host smaller conversations in your regional alliances and coworking communities. If you would like to discuss this topic in more detail, Oren has generously invited you to reach out using the contact links below.

Launch a conversation about inclusion and allyship in your coworking community.

There will be no IDEA Conversations
in November or December
Join us in 2023!

Oren Salomon

Oren Salomon

Owner - Starship Bagel
Former Coworking Operator - Dallas Fort Work

Contact Oren

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