Wyman’s DEI Word Bank

We invite you to join us on our personal and professional journeys to be anti-racist, equitable, and inclusive. We encourage you to:

  • Use the word. Find a way to use the term as it is defined.
  • Share the word. Share, with at least one person, the word and its definition.
  • Practice the behavior of the word. How can you practice behaviors aligned with a positive word (such as being inclusive) or interrupt yourself practicing a less desirable behavior (such as being exclusive)?

Antiracist: One who is supporting the idea that racial groups are equals and none needs developing, and is supporting policy that reduces racial inequity. Being an antiracist requires persistent self-awareness, constant self-criticism, and regular self-examination. (Source: How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi)

Cultural Competence: The ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with people across cultures. Grounded in the respect and appreciation of cultural differences, cultural competence is demonstrated in the attitudesbehaviorspractices, and policies of people, organizations, and systems.

Intersectionality: This term describes the ways in which race, class, gender, and other aspects of our identity “intersect” – overlap and interact – with one another, informing the way in which individuals simultaneously experience oppression and privilege in their daily lives interpersonally and systemically. Intersectionality promotes the idea that aspects of our identity do not work in a silo and provides a basis for understanding how these individual identity markers work with one another (Source: Center for the Study of Social Policy. Using an Anti-Racist Intersectional Frame at CSSP).

Social Identity: Our sense of who we are and our place in the world relative to our membership in a combination of social groups.

Unconscious Bias: A deeply held preference for or dislike of a given social group that typically operates below the level of conscious awareness and tends to influence one’s actions, decisions, and behaviors towards members of that group

Homophobia: The fear, hatred, discomfort with, or mistrust of people who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual. (Source: Planned Parenthood. What are homophobia and sexual orientation discrimination).

Transgender: An umbrella term for people whose gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth. People under the transgender umbrella may describe themselves using one or more of a wide variety of terms (Source: GLAAD – GLAAD Media Reference Guide).

Equality: The effort to treat everyone the same or to ensure that everyone has access to the same opportunities. However, only working to achieve equality ignores historical and structural factors that benefit some social groups and disadvantages other social groups in ways that create differential starting points (Source: YWCA – Our Shared Language: Social Justice Glossary).

Equity: The effort to provide different levels of support based on an individual’s or group’s needs in order to achieve fairness in outcomes. Working to achieve equity acknowledges unequal starting places and the need to correct the imbalance (Source: YWCA – Our Shared Language: Social Justice Glossary).

Diversity: The overall mix of differences and similarities among all groups including but not limited to race, gender, class, age, sexual orientation, ethnicity, physical and mental abilities, national origin, veteran status, religion/spiritual beliefs, education, occupation, personality characteristics.

Inclusion: The extent to which cultural and social processes within a community allow for all groups to utilize their full potential and access the full benefits of community membership…If diversity is the mix, then inclusion is about making the mix work – it reflects the ability of leaders to create an environment, through their own behavior and through the establishment of policies, practices, and procedures, where people are comfortable showing up as themselves; are valued and respected; and experience being fully at the table (Source: The Center for the Study of Social Policy).