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A Reflection on this World Day of Social Justice

Today, February 20th, is the annual World Day of Social Justice! This global celebration promotes justice, equity, inclusion, and respect and encourages folks to consider the role they play in upholding systems which may not serve all individuals equitably. Days like these are powerful calls to action, urging us all to acknowledge and address social injustice as we witness it, in an effort to move toward a society that we can all collectively benefit from.

Social justice is the cornerstone of any peaceful and prosperous society; it's crucial that we care for one another, accept each other as we are and recognize the compounding factors which can impede true equity. We must hold the mindset that injustice against our neighbour is tantamount to injustice against ourselves – to society as a whole. By championing empathy and accountability, we can nurture true growth and ensure that safety, dignity, and freedom remain non-negotiable human rights.

Naturally, at ParriagGroup, this day is somewhat of a big deal. This is what we do, it's what we've always done (even before being socially conscious was "in vogue") and we love it; social justice is the entirety of our ethos. When we say it's about people we mean it – we strive toward the continuous betterment of ourselves, the organizations we work with, and the communities they serve. We really do believe that a holistic, people-centred, and compassionate approach to diversity, accessibility, equity, inclusion, and respect is the only sure-fire way to ensure that nobody is left behind.

Public-facing administrations, private organizations, and individuals all play a vital role in dismantling and overhauling systems which no longer serve the collective; prejudice is deeply embedded in the fabric of society, and it takes a village. By no means is it easy work to examine your own bias and action transformative change – but it is rewarding and it's always worthwhile. The profound impact of improving outcomes for even one person is reason alone to keep breaking ground and striving to be better.

Social justice is not the lofty concept it's often billed to be – it's not an inaccessible goal, far off in the distance, it's entirely in reach. Whether it's through education, activism, community engagement, or simple conversations with your inner circle – the opportunities to challenge the status quo and make your stance known are bountiful. We would also gently remind those reading that perfection is not possible and that is a good thing; there is safety in the knowledge that we all have much to learn from one another. Diversity of thought is a precious commodity, and it has to be safeguarded.

This World Day of Social Justice, we want to affirm our commitment to anti-racist, anti-oppressive, and people-focused practices. Momentum for social justice is only gaining and complacency is not the "easy out" it may appear to be. We urge you to be brave, vocal, and humble; recognize when it is time to speak and when it is time to listen; and accept that equity is a lifelong journey, but it's one that's unequivocally worth the wait.

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