Take 5: Five ways to positive change through diversity, equity and inclusion

Take 5: Five ways to positive change through diversity, equity and inclusion

Five ways to positive change through diversity, equity and inclusion with Muriam De Angelis, EY Diversity and Inclusion Leader

Muriam De Angelis leads with empathy and inspires change in everyone she meets. Her mission is to help create an environment where everyone feels welcome, and each person is included and free to be themselves.

Muriam was raised by a single mom who immigrated to Canada by herself from Trinidad at the age of 16. Growing up, she often saw her mom struggle to make ends meet. When Muriam was hired by EY as a summer intern, her life improved dramatically. Muriam continues to advocate for unbiased recruitment processes, mentorship programs, and educational programs to help provide equal opportunities to pursue happiness and success.

Since 2017, she has been driving policy change for better equity and engagement with EY’s clients, advising key stakeholders on the importance of workforce diversity in improving organizational effectiveness, and fostering innovation through a variety of diversity and inclusiveness (D&I) programs supported by EY.

Muriam shares five steps we can all take to achieve meaningful, sustained action to advance diversity and inclusion.

  1. Educate yourself. Stay up-to-date on current events and read books on topics related to D&I or enroll in a history course. It’s important to learn about the political and social struggles to achieve equal rights. At EY, we provide learning opportunities to employees through events hosted by great organizations such as:
  2. Be an ally. Make actions speak louder than words by joining the journey to become an ally committed to racial equity and gender equality. Actively read, watch, listen and learn about the experiences of people of different cultures. Take initiative and foster your own awareness about the impacts of racism and how to speak against prejudice when it occurs. Seeing the way EY Ripples, our global corporate responsibility program can help drive sustainable and inclusive growth encourages employees to find ways to be allies.
  3. Join a network. Choose a group that aligns with your values and resonates with you. You can also look for local events that are created with inclusivity in mind. Most organizations have a variety of networks that employees can choose to be part of. At EY, we have Pan-Asian, Black and Indigenous Professional Networks, as well as UNITY, which represents and promotes building community and an inclusive culture for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and ally (LGBTQ+) professionals. I remember my very first event with UNITY. Everyone brought a friend and created new connections. It was the most warm and welcoming group of people, and I haven’t stopped being part of it ever since.
  4. Attend an event hosted by your own network or in your community. Attending events help create collaborative opportunities and challenge stereotypes. If your workplace doesn’t offer similar activities, be an ally and reach out to a leader, or speak to like-minded coworkers and plan an event of your own.
  5. Initiate and participate in dialogue. Don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo. Create safe spaces for difficult conversations. Learn to actively listen to others’ experiences. Here are just a few ways to get started:
    • Social media is a great place to share stories and learn about different realities from others’ experiences.
    • Start a book club and share books from culturally diverse authors.
    • Start a virtual meetup through any online platform and keep the conversation going.