1. Purpose and Scope
The Anti-Racism, Decolonization, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee is a standing committee of the Games Institute that provides leadership related to Anti-Racism, Decolonization, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion by bringing attention to and leading action that addresses these issues. Given the challenges that marginalized people experience in the games industry and in academia, the committee aims to create a radically inclusive GI community. The committee reports to the Director of the Games Institute and engages in educational and advocacy work, liaises with other related committees and programs, and makes policy recommendations to the Games Institute.
2. Budget and Resources
2A. The committee's annual budget is determined by the Director of the Games Institute in consultation with the Chair. Barring extraordinary circumstances, the committee's budget will not be more than 10% less than the previous year.
2B. The Games Institute will provide resources to the committee that include but are not limited to staff support to coordinate meetings and assist with internal communication; technical support and a webpage on the Game's Institute's website to facilitate external communication; and use and access to Game's Institute spaces, communication channels, and other common resources, as needed, to conduct the committee's business.
The committee consist of 11-13 voting members, including the chair, the chair-elect, the immediate past chair and the vice-chair. In the event that the past-chair is not able to serve, the committee may appoint another member to serve in this place. The Games Institute Student Council shall select one of their members to serve as a voting member and one Games Institute staff member shall serve as the secretary in a non‐voting capacity. The committee will also include a non-voting auxiliary membership group.
All members of the committee should acknowledge their privilege, in relation to both lived experience and institutional roles, by actively making space for others to speak and be heard. Recognizing that privilege shifts with context, members may be more or less vocal, active, and/or assertive in single meeting, a series of meetings, or for a particular length of time.
3A. Voting Members. The primary call for members will be posted for one month in the spring. The deadline for submissions will be at least seven days prior to the decision on new members, which will be made by the committee and should occur at or before the June meeting. Each committee member is invited to serve for a renewable two-year term, up to three consecutive terms. Committee members should declare their interest in renewal by the April meeting of the second year of their term. The decision to renew member terms should occur prior to decisions about new members. A second call for additional student members will be posted for one month in the Fall. The deadline for submissions will be at least seven days prior to the decision on new members, which should occur at or before the October meeting.
Membership should be composed of persons whose self-identification, lived experience, area of expertise, or institutional access facilitates the committee's capacity to engage with equity issues from equity-seeking groups. Whenever possible, the committee should privilege self-identified minoritized members and members with lived experience of marginalization.
- Membership must be composed of at least 50% racialized people with priority given to applicants who are disadvantaged by multiple sources of oppression: e.g., race, gender, sexuality, religion, disability. Black and Indigenous applicants should be prioritized. If there are not sufficient numbers of racialized applicants to allow the committee to be composed of at least 50% racialized members, the committee should solicit applicants for the remaining positions and accept applications on a rolling basis.
- Students should compose approximately 50% and no less than 33% of the committee membership. If there are not sufficient numbers of applicants to allow the committee to be composed of at least 33% student members, the committee should solicit applicants for the remaining positions and accept applications on a rolling basis.
- Membership should strive for parity in terms of gender and sexuality, and should aim to include nonbinary and trans representation.
- Membership should aim to include at least one representative from each of the six faculties (Applied Health Science, Science, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics, and Environment).
- GI members primarily affiliated with the University of Waterloo will have preference over GI members primarily affiliated with other institutions. GI members primarily affiliated with other institutions will hold no more than two seats on the committee.
Each committee member is expected to contribute to the normal operation of the committee, primarily but not limited to participating in the deliberation, decision-making, and execution of the committee’s agenda.
Student members, graduate or undergraduate,) receive an honorarium for their service, to be paid in one installment in December. Student voices are vital to this committee's work, but students will not be expected to contribute more labour than faculty.
3B. Non-Voting Members. A call for auxiliary members will be posted for one month every Spring and every Fall. The deadline for submissions will be at least seven days prior to the decision on new members, which should occur at or before the June meeting. Each auxiliary member is invited to serve for a renewable two-year term. Auxiliary members are expected to contribute to the implementation of the committee’s agenda. They are invited to attend meetings and participate in deliberation.
3C. The Chair.
The chair is a full-time member of the regular faculty at the University of Waterloo and will be elected at the May meeting to serve a one-year term as chair-elect, a two-year term as chair, and a one-year term as immediate past chair. A chair may serve one subsequent two-year term; barring exceptional circumstances these terms should not be consecutive. Terms begin at the July meeting. Committee members should prioritize leadership opportunities, including the post of chair, for Black, Indigenous, and racialized faculty whose lived experience and/or expertise particularly qualify them to chair the Anti-Racism, Decolonization, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee.
The chair is charged with the general management and supervision of the affairs of the committee and its sub-committees. The chair will coordinate and chair the committee’s meetings and will represent the committee at the University and in the broader community. The chair serves as a voting member of the Games Institute executive body. The past chair or chair-elect will fulfill the duties of the chair in their absence.
3D. The Vice Chair. The vice-chair is a student in good standing or staff member at the University of Waterloo and will be elected at the May meeting to serve a one-year term as vice-chair. A vice-chair may serve one subsequent one-year term. The vice chair is charged with the management and supervision of communication between the committee and the Games Institute, including consultation with members and information disseminated on the committee’s webpage. The vice chair will assist the chair in preparing for meetings and will represent the committee at the University and in the broader community. The vice-chair receives an honorarium in addition to the student honorarium, paid in December.
3E. Ex-Officio Members.
The Director and Associate Directors of the Games Institute are ex-officio members of the committee and as such are non-voting members.
4. Meetings and Communication
4A. The committee will meet once per month, typically at a regular time and day decided at the start of each term. With Games Institute staff assistance, the Chair will prepare and circulate an agenda in advance of each meeting. Quorum for a meeting is 60% of voting members. Some meetings or portions of meetings may be scheduled to be held “in camera.” These meetings will only be attended by voting members of the committee.
4B. The committee will attempt to conduct most business by consensus. When formal measures are required, the committee will vote. To ensure that those most impacted by the committee’s work have a clear voice and are empowered to do work for their communities, a vote must pass with a simple majority of the committee vote AND a simple majority of the votes of committee members who have lived experience implicated in the matter. To enable this, members should identify their lived experience during discussion, but must do so prior to the vote. The committee recognizes that members lived experiences are diverse and not always transparent and will respect members' claims in these matters.
4C. The committee will engage extensive consultation with members of the Games Institute community around anti-racism, decolonization, equity, diversity, and inclusion issues, and endeavor to consult directly with members who identify with groups directly implicated by these issues. No fewer than three times per year, the chair and vice chair will arrange group and individual input sessions so that members of the Games Institute who are unable to join the committee have input to shape the committee’s work. No fewer than three times per year, the committee will publish a report of its activities. Consultation will not be construed as an impediment to timely action.
4D. The activities of the committee, including announcements, reports, and policy recommendations, will be documented on a webpage hosted by the Games Institute and linked to the Games Institute’s website.
5. Amendment/Review of Terms of Reference
The committee will organize a subcommittee at least once every five years, (and no more than three times in a five year period), to review, update, and amend these terms of reference so that the committee may provide better leadership on matters of Anti-Racism, Decolonization, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. The standing mandate of these subcommittees is to determine how and propose changes to allow the committee to more effectively address the complexity of multiple, often but not always intersecting forms of marginalization.
Proposed changes must be circulated two weeks prior to deliberation and adopted through a two-thirds vote of the committee.
NOTE: Terms of Reference ratified by the Committee on July 22, 2021