Over the past week I have been listening, reading and reflecting about racism, systemic oppression in America and what my role is in this system as a white woman and as a business owner.
The truth is I have not done enough, and I must do more.
Specifically, I’ve gained a lot of clarity this week on how I have fallen short of being anti-racist as a business owner. Last week I took a long and hard look at Canvas Weddings’ recommended vendor list, and it is almost entirely made up of businesses owned by white people. I have always considered myself an “inclusive” business owner who doesn’t discriminate against anyone, but one look at who I regularly recommend to my clients makes it painfully obvious that I have not been practicing that inclusion. I have not done enough, and I must do more.
I am committing to expanding the network at Canvas Weddings. I will seek out and nurture relationships with Black business owners and see my vendor list grow in strength and diversity. I also commit to supporting businesses owned by Black people in the Hudson Valley, Catskills and beyond with my professional recommendations and personal patronage.
I am also committing to listening to and supporting Black voices calling for change in the wedding industry and the world, and I’d like to thank Terrica Skaggs (@cocktailterrica), Darryl Moore (@d.conceierge), Lattice Hudson (@latticehudson) and Monique Melton (@moemotivate) and so many others for spending so much time and skill creating forums, videos and resources to help lead and guide us in this work. I highly recommend checking out their sites and resources.
I welcome the accountability of my clients, colleagues and friends while I honor these commitments.
George Floyd’s life matters. Breonna Taylor’s life matters. Ahmaud Arbery’s life matters. Black lives MATTER.