Triggered by tragedy, the recent momentum behind the #BlackLivesMatter movement reminds me that the simple statement of ‘We are all equal’ remains a societal aspiration.
Sadly, today, we cannot own this most basic of claims. Here in the UK, we view our society and communities – on the whole – as fortunate and progressive. Yet equality, for some of the most basic discriminating factors, e.g. colour, gender and ability, is still to be achieved.
What I’ve learned
One of the biggest learnings I have taken from the recent protests is that if you don’t do anything, you are effectively endorsing the continuation of the current status quo. An absence of action can only help to fuel inequality.
My personal reaction to recent events was positive and quick: to encourage the conversations, ‘like’ and ‘share’ the compelling posts calling for change, ‘blackout’ my Instagram, etc. Admittedly, they are not significant steps but they are positive actions that I can commit to and build on.
However, my Army of Nannies reaction was more measured. I paused, but it was with good reason.
How do you meaningfully engage as a brand?
Initially, I reflected on the thought that brands shouldn’t get political. Or rather, I dislike it when brands bandwagon political issues. As a member of the LGBT community, I see it all the time in adverts. Various products telling me they’re great because in their advert they have the guts to show two guys kissing.
Sadly, all too often this approach comes down to a box-ticking exercise. It’s a shallow version of diversity; it’s representation by visual mix rather than respecting and embracing any cultural or attitudinal differences.
However, I acknowledge these adverts play an important role in challenging perceptions purely by the fact that we ‘see’ diversity and therefore normalise difference. But just ‘seeing’ isn’t enough.
So when it came to Army of Nannies, I paused, to not jump on the bandwagon. But to also build a response that will contribute to a real and sustainable difference, and one that we can build on.
Army of Nannies: achieving ‘We are all equal’
While highly emotional and traumatic events are happening on a global level, I think we have to look to our worlds and work out how we can all act to make a difference. We must turn positive thoughts and words into actions.
In that spirit, here are five principles we, at Army of Nannies, will adhere to:
From launch, will make every effort to deliver inclusivity and equality. We will embody ‘we are all equal’ in everything we do.
Everyone is welcome, but this is our initial focus.
Our blog and social spaces will be platforms for our communities to express themselves. We will actively invite and encourage contributions and collaborations that offer a different, alternative or under-represented point of view.
Already, we are having conversations with nannies who have smashed the traditional moulds and they are inspirational. If we can provide a space where other aspiring mould-breakers can connect and share ideas, we will all win.
We haven’t got all the answers, but together we can find the questions. Then, with our best efforts, we will find the answers and commit to turning words and thoughts into actions.
We invite you to help us get this going by joining are Facebook group. Help us get the conversation going.
Furthermore, we will publish 6-monthly reports on how we are living by these principles. And we will appoint a team of ‘mould-breakers’ to judge what we’ve done and encourage us to do better and to do more.
Is that a good start?
Please, tell us what you think.
We are new and just getting to grips with the industry and its strengths and weaknesses. But we are open and can’t stress enough the importance of engaging with ALL nannies and families within the industry.
Given the pain and anguish, certain communities are feeling at the moment, we hope that small efforts like this can contribute to the changes required to stop the same things happening again and again.
We are all equal.
Let’s act to make it real.
Please help us live up to our five principles. In doing so, we’ll contribute to making sure ‘we are all equal’ is a reality within the nanny industry.
My email is email@example.com
I look forward to hearing from you and perhaps working with you? And hopefully, you can join the conversation on our social spaces.