The “Words Matter” campaign aims to encourage the UNCG campus community to understand how words have power. Words can impact the experiences and sense of belonging of others on campus. This campaign seeks to raise awareness about the context of certain words or phrases that can be hurtful or offensive. Certain language connects to larger systems of institutional marginalization, including but not limited to racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, Islamophobia, etc. Sometimes words and phrases are microaggressions that may not be intended to be harmful, but can negatively impact the experiences of members of our community.
This campaign is not centered on “language policing.” It is not seeking to tell people what they can or cannot say. The goal of this campaign is to educate and create opportunities for dialogue about how to consider language when promoting diversity and inclusion on campus.
Phase 1- Passive Programming
During the Spring 2017 semester, there were over 150 submission cards of words and phrases that impact our UNCG community. These cards were displayed at the 2017 Tunnel of Oppression and the EUC Art Gallery.
See samples of the campaign cards below:
Phase 2- Dialogue
CommUNITY Dialogues will be developed to learn more about topics like bias, microaggressions, intersectionality and the campaign. Students will also be encouraged to take a pledge to promote inclusion on campus.
Phase 3- Take the Pledge
The purpose of #WordsMatter is to promote more inclusivity on and acceptance of diversity.
By signing this pledge you agree to:
- Be respectful of other people’s differences.
- Recognize that other people experience and may have been subject to instances of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, etc.
- Be conscious of words and phrases that YOU say and how they affect others.
- Commit to promoting inclusive language on UNCG’s campus.
Click here to sign the pledge: https://goo.gl/forms/kM51VJJj3uDk7tet2
Want to learn more about how you can have a positive impact on campus?
Check out the following resources: