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4. Working with committees

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Committees are often a central part of municipal anti-racism and anti-discrimination work. Establishing and running effective committees often makes a difference between some success and failure.

Box 8 contains some basic rules for effective committee work. However, municipal committees addressing racism and discrimination usually require the support of at least one elected official to have meaningful impact in the municipality. With the support of an elected official, many doors to administrative support and commitment are more easily opened, and many barriers to public recognition and support can be addressed.

BOX 8: For an effective committee

  • Have representation from community, politicians, administration
  • Involve motivated people
  • Aim for a mixture of skills, abilities, and experience
  • Define roles and responsibilities and decision making processes clearly
  • Define strategic objectives
  • Report and establish liaison relationship with municipal council
  • Provide progress reports to the community.

One of the main struggles with committees is keeping the members focused. The SMART plan described in Box 7 is one way of helping in this regard. SMART goals, objectives and activities should ensure that the committee is doing meaningful work.

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