Edmonton’s Race-based Data Table: A municipal approach to addressing systemic racism through the collection and use of disaggregated, race-based data

Uchechi Shirley Anaduaka, Alexa Ferdinands, Janelle Knoop, Sarah Barber, Maria J. Mayan

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

Abstract

Recent events, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, have drawn nationwide attention to systemic racism as a serious threat to public health in Canada. One promising approach to address such racism is through developing and implementing standardized procedures for collecting and using disaggregated, race-based data. In this commentary, we summarize why this approach is necessary to address systemic racism in Canada, and highlight municipal actions being taken in Edmonton, Alberta, to move this approach forward. In 2021, a Race-based Data Table, comprising 24 institutions and organizations affiliated with health, education, and policing systems, was formed in Edmonton. It aimed to engage practitioners, systems representatives, academics, and community members in collective advocacy around accessing race-based data to better understand and address disparate health outcomes associated with COVID-19 for racialized communities. Further, the Table intends to co-create a charter and toolkit outlining best practices for ethical, race-based data collection and use with local stakeholders and knowledge users. In documenting the beginning stages of the Table, and in evaluating its ongoing progress, we contribute to national conversations regarding the need for government institutions and other organizations to consistently collect and use race-based data as a means of increasing transparency and accountability in their actions.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCanadian Journal of Public Health
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • Diversity and inclusion
  • Equity
  • Municipal
  • Race-based data
  • Racism

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