SpeakEasy’s Equity &
Anti-Racism Action Plan
Guided by our mission, we at SpeakEasy believe that live theatre has the ability to connect us to one another. On stage and throughout our programming we tell stories that invite us to understand ourselves and the world around us more deeply, to uplift the voices of all races, ethnicities, gender identities, economic statuses, and abilities, and envision the changes we wish to see in our society.
As storytellers, we must engage honestly and deeply in conversations about our humanity. The appalling events of 2020 exposed the inherent racism and inequity in our nation, our city, and our theatre community. We witnessed the murders of innocent Black individuals at the hands of police officers, the disparate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on communities of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), and the inequities in theatre as an industry as pointed out by We See You White American Theatre. We must examine our own inequitable practices and complicity in systemic racism and engage in an ongoing process of addressing and undoing these wrongs.
We at SpeakEasy Stage stand in solidarity with those calling for justice and radical change.
We stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. We recognize the history of violence and racism perpetuated against traditionally marginalized communities, especially Black and Indigenous people, most commonly by people and organizations rooted in white privilege. We acknowledge that it is not enough to believe in equality, but that we must actively and deliberately reduce harm and combat systemic oppression in all forms.
This commitment statement will ground our work, and we will continue to evaluate it as our organization grows. We acknowledge that this requires a long-term commitment and openness to structural and sustainable change. We are part of a mobilized arts community that must be in step with the needs and desires expressed by BIPOC, as well as individuals of all ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, and physical and mental abilities.
We encourage feedback from our community and see this ongoing dialogue as imperative to shaping both our internal and external work. If you have comments or suggestions about this work, please complete this contact form.
To deliver on these commitments and the vision of our organization, we have created the SpeakEasy Equity and Anti-Racism Action Plan (SEARAP), which can be found below. The guiding principles are:
- We reaffirm our commitment to ensure that the stories we tell and all the work we produce reflect the multitude of identities, viewpoints, and experiences of our shared world. As we continue to examine what it means to create conversations through the art we produce, we acknowledge the power of our platform to amplify a diversity of voices. We commit to uplifting the stories and talents of those who have been silenced by institutional racism and exclusion. We will actively seek individuals of all races, ethnicities, gender identities, economic statuses, and abilities to be decision makers and collaborators in our organization, so as to best manifest the experiences of all the communities we serve.
- We will engage a broad spectrum of perspectives and voices throughout our organization and ensure that those who have been traditionally silenced are encouraged and supported to actively participate at every level. By continuously evaluating our policies, processes and informal practices, we will actively pursue a workplace culture and organizational systems that uphold the perspectives of BIPOC and traditionally marginalized individuals and affirm a sense of belonging.
- We will more effectively reach out to and welcome communities that have been traditionally underrepresented in our theater, especially BIPOC individuals and people with disabilities. We will widen our outreach through thoughtful collaborations with community partners, and we will remove barriers, internal or external, that would prevent BIPOC individuals or people with disabilities from feeling welcome.
- We will use the power of our platform responsibly and actively to combat systemic racism and advance social justice. We will elevate and support artists on the frontlines of anti-racism and equity organizing through public advocacy, community partnerships, and intentional programming.
SpeakEasy Stage Company’s complete list of commitments, including timeline, structural changes, and anticipated outcomes, can be found in our Equity and Anti-Racism Action Plan. For questions or feedback, visit our contact page.