Radical Collective Care: Cultivating Black Students’ Resistance

Many Black students are overwhelmed, exhausted, and angry about the ongoing and pervasive climate of anti-Blackness within our campus community.  Women’s and Gender Studies (WGST) is committed to fostering affirming spaces and recourse for Black students harmed by the violence of anti-Black language on campus, specifically the use of the n-word by some of our instructors in class.

WGST is hosting radical collective care and resistance sessions for Black-identified students with Dr. Rai Reece, a Black-identified mediator.  Radical collective care offers a starting point to support Black students and to address the structural care deficit that Black students experience.  This is a critical moment for WGST and uprooting anti-Blackness requires a commitment to addressing the painful aftermath of recent incidents.

Dr. Rai Reece is an interdisciplinary scholar-activist whose expertise includes Canadian Black feminism, critical race theory, anti-Black racism, punishment and misogynoir, critical feminist criminology, community-based ethnography, prison health, equity as social praxis, and abolition and activism. Dr. Reece was recently honoured as one of the 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women in 2020.

WGST wants to ensure that students understand we respect their privacy and dignity.  These circle sessions will be held via Zoom and registration is required (please register early).  Sessions will be held on four Fridays at 5-7pm and are intended for Black-identified students only.  The four dates are January 22, February 26, March 19, and April 16.

Below are some guidelines to foster trust and community-building when participating in a virtual event.

Register online at:  https://ctl2.uwindsor.ca/bystander/workshops/17/


Participation is by choice:

Participants are encouraged to engage throughout the session, however, each individual should only participate to the level at which they are comfortable.  In order to enhance the quality of dialogue and community-building, it would be ideal for everyone to join the session with cameras on, but we understand why this may not be possible for some.


All participants are asked to respect each other’s privacy and not to reveal anything personal that they learn about someone outside of the circle session.  While we hope that everyone will respect this privacy, we can never guarantee complete confidentiality in a group setting.  What is said in each session will never be attributed to any individual afterwards.  Participants should know that if there are outcomes for further steps to take, WGST will receive a summary of these items from the facilitator after all sessions are complete.

Respectful Communication:

We ask everyone to be respectful in their disagreement and when speaking to one another.  For more information, students can refer to the University’s Student Code of Conduct.

Mental Health Support:

This may be a difficult discussion for most and in an effort to provide further support for participants, the University of Windsor’s Student Counselling Centre is on-call throughout each session with support from a Black-identified counsellor who can be contacted directly at safia.abdulle@uwindsor.ca.  (https://www.uwindsor.ca/studentcounselling/)