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Advancing Equality: Free webinar aimed at a more equitable community addresses ‘implicit bias’

By Kareem Simpson
NKY Community Action Commission

Part of a series by NKY’s nonprofits who stand together against racism and any acts that dehumanize people.

In the wake of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd’s deaths, people across the country are calling for more systematic change, demanding reform in many of our society’s institutions.

And there has been a term that has been growing in popularity in our society’s lexicon amid the aforementioned call for reform: “implicit bias,” or the attitudes and stereotypes that unconsciously affect our understanding, actions, and decisions. Local organizers are hoping a virtual community forum will cause people to do some soul searching about their implicit biases.

Jerome Bowles, Founder and Executive Director of The Bowles Center of Diversity, said that the free webinar, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, October 14, is an outgrowth of meetings held earlier this year with community partners on race relations and is in direct response to the recent diversity challenges occurring across the country.

“The Implicit Bias Symposium will focus on four important areas,” said Bowles. “Education, Economic Development, Housing, the Law and Health Care. The goal is to empower our region to address implicit bias in these areas and respond to them with the assistance of the Bowles Center and Agencies such as the Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission. We have these concerns and issues in our region however working together we can overcome them.”

While Bowles and Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission Executive Director, Catrena Bowman-Thomas will serve as the host and moderator of the two-hour webinar, many local area specialists plan to serve as panelists to help give a better idea of how much implicit bias negatively affects those most in need. Special guest panelist will include:

Mike Sipple, President, Centennial Inc.
Alieu Nyassi, System Director, Diversity & Inclusion at St. Elizabeth Healthcare
Alona Ballard, Education Outreach Manager, Housing Opportunities Made Equal
Dr. Kristilynn Turney, CEO and Founder, EdPD Unlimited
Barbara Bonar, Esq., Founding Manager & Partner, Bonar, Bucher & Rankin, PSC

“We are honored to partner with the Bowles Center for Diversity Center to present the Implicit Bias Symposium,” said Bowman-Thomas. “It is vital that we as a region identify and begin to address the issues of implicit bias. We see the impact it has on our families and children every day, so we want to be part of the conversation as we begin to develop strategies to create a more equitable community.”

Anyone wanting to attend the free webinar should register no later than close of business Tuesday, October 13 here.

Kareen Simpson is manager of operations for the NKY Community Action Commission.

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