I'm afraid of my life now...everything's a trigger. I'm worried I can't move past this and I'll never be OK. I stay far from the building and away for fear of running into the people. Even though my rational brain says that's not likely. But when does this ever operate on reason. Am I really … Continue reading Afraid
I’ve officially given up. I’ve surrendered to the colonizers what I’ve invested 5 years of schooling and 15 long years working towards. I’ve been in denial, mourning the loss for years now. Today I accept it. The system is too large, the sexist players too monstrous and the racist gate keepers too imposing for my … Continue reading Farewell to this Career
This global threat was detected from as early as December 2019...yet the virus was not newsworthy until January 2020, and the pandemic took form in February, but was not named or declared as such until March: COVID-19. By January, there were clear signs that this was serious and by February it was obvious that this … Continue reading Left to Die
Wow, it's been months since I could find the words to be heard. So much has happened yet so little has changed in the international development space. At the same time, my world evolved today...I had a win...and with it I won back my dignity, my self-confidence and my sense of value in competence. This … Continue reading I needed a win…and I got it!!!
In my first attempt back at work - independent international consulting this time - it was an epic disaster...hell, not even describable how bad it's been. Since believing that I had triumphantly recovered from the abuse of my past sojourn into the impactful world of international development, I failed. Not even by a little bit, … Continue reading Team Lead from Hell – Part I
"I admit to being naive. I admit to being too optimistic. But I won't buy into the idea that ill-treatment in these organizations should have been expected and somehow this is all my fault." As I write things down in chronological order, searching for the legal implications in each moment, encounter or reaction, I watch … Continue reading Not the Model Victim
"Since my presence made you so uncomfortable, my features made you assume I was not qualified or worthy of being here, that I'm just the diversity pick. Alas, your insecurities and your prejudices are not my doing. There are a range of frailties in this brave new world, and you just have to learn to … Continue reading A Few Tips on Surviving a Racially Charged Workplace
I'll never forget my interviews for international organizations. I feel like I spent half of the sessions batting away stereotypes. Looking back now, I can figure out the trick questions, maybe trying to find out just how "thick my skin" was. Often, there was no black person in the room...and on the few occasions there … Continue reading Yup…International Development Has a Race Problem
This month in our 'Monthly Media Spotlight' our team wants to consider the impact of public punishment in the age of the internet. Public shaming may be a double edged sword. Calling out racist and misogynistic actions, situations and people can have positive impacts. However, rushing to conclusions can create judgments of guilt without a … Continue reading Daily Misogyny – Gender and Punishment
A public transit worker is "hurt and embarrassed" after being called out in a viral tweet for eating on a train. Nope, she didn't get fired. Yah, the power of mass support! The person who wrote the tweet, was a communications officer at the World Bank Group. Not only did she make the report publicly … Continue reading Over-punishing Black Women, A World Bank Tradition
"I've shared my experiences and my feelings because I know I'm not the only one...Let us speak up, let us speak out, and let us make change happen. But really...on an individual level, what would justice even look like?" Warning - deep deeply pessimistic mood. I've lost the luxury of knowing that I matter. I … Continue reading We Need Justice? Global Change? Internal Reform?
I grew up on a steady diet of lies from the mass media about what poverty is, what it means, and what it says about those affected. My parents taught me differently. My family was comfortable middle class and strong proponents of social and economic mobility through education. It was critical for our psyche that … Continue reading About Poverty – A reading list
"Surprise! Surprise!" I said to myself as I clicked the link to an article on devex. The opening paragraph read:"The legitimacy of the World Bank’s presidential appointment process is under renewed scrutiny after U.S. President Donald Trump’s pick, David Malpass, emerged as the only candidate to succeed Jim Kim." Knowing what I know about the … Continue reading World Bank’s Old Way of Getting a New President
Today in our 'Monthly Media Spotlight' we considered writing a thoughtful piece about sexual harassment in the workplace, but we are satisfied that so much has been said thanks to the MeToo revolution that people get it. So much has been said over the past few years that the slow evolution of the law is … Continue reading Daily Misogyny – Pervasiveness of sexual harassment and assault in the work place
"I hate what I've become. The label of victim has always been so abhorrent to being such a strong woman. But now...it sticks. Some things happened to me at work. Intellectually I know it's not my fault, I know it could have been worst and I know I should stand up for myself. But..." Recovery … Continue reading What am I now?
"When I was hired to join the World Bank Group, I was in my happy Caribbean bubble. I greeted everyone - even in elevators - made friendly conversation, respected the variety of peoples around me and treated everyone with respect and trust. I was starstruck...at first." As any other newbie happy to achieve success by … Continue reading [Toxic and] Hostile Workplace Environment
"I traveled across the globe to a different world, desperate for respect and to be given a chance. So much of my identity is tied to my work, my career, my profession. Now I have anxiety attacks thinking about sitting in an office." It's been 2 years now since I first noticed the symptoms. I … Continue reading Toxic [and Hostile] Workplace Environment
Today for our 'Monthly Media Spotlight' we highlight Women's History Month - a month long dedication with important media attention to the contributions of women to history and society across time. It's an annual celebration in March, for the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia corresponding with International Women's Day on March 8 (and … Continue reading Daily Misogyny – Celebrating Sheroes: Women History Month
"There's a seedy way in which racism affects your mental health. Racism in the workplace doesn't look like it did decades ago. It's not separate bathrooms and water coolers or openly used racial slurs. It's subtle, quiet and deceptively polite. Racism is even more dangerous when the experiences of people of color are denied, ignored … Continue reading “If you don’t mind, can you sit in the back? He can stay.”