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June 25, 2020
by Pascale Sablan, AIA, NOMA, LEED AP
Courtesy of Beyond the Built Environment.
Courtesy of Beyond the Built Environment.
Courtesy of Beyond the Built Environment.
Courtesy of Beyond the Built Environment.

Pascale Sablan, AIA, NOMA, LEED AP, Senior Associate, S9 Architecture and Founder and Executive Director, Beyond the Built Environment, is using her platform to dismantle racial injustice in the profession and elevate the voices of diverse designers. Read her call below.

The force of erasure is relentless; the process of keeping our history elusive is not accidental but a key component of oppression in the infrastructure of racial injustice. Beyond the Built Environment (BBE) is working to dismantle the cages and untie the shackles that confine us, creating a conduit to the greatness of diverse designers.

Two years ago, we were formed to engage the community through architecture to advocate for equitable, reflectively diverse environments. At this moment and beyond, we are leveraging the work we’ve done so far to advocate for policy changes and hold institutions accountable for ensuring the elevation of diverse designers and their contributions to the world. BBE is stewarding the following three action items to dismantle injustice:

SAY IT WITH – MEdia
Representation matters and media publications have neglected our stories and our contributions, and in some cases have erased our existence. With this call for action, we are looking to have media outlets including digital, print, and broadcast to commit to tracking, publishing, and increasing their percentage of BIPOC and women featured in their publication.

SAY IT LOUD – NOW
BBE has elevated and proclaimed the greatness of 250 diverse designers through our 15 SAY IT LOUD exhibitions, with the initial goal of reaching 500 in five years. The urgency for this content is now, and as we discuss the books that must be removed from our curricula, we are looking to make a meaningful addition, a Great Diverse Designers Textbook. This call for action is setting a goal of increasing the content of the library to both serve as a directory for business opportunities for the featured designers and material for the publication of our textbook. Visit our submission page to submit your projects by September 1, 2020. See a gallery of those who have already submitted here.

Data to Define Policy
To understand how we can make policy changes to combat discrimination and economic equity within the world of architecture, we will be hosting a virtual focus group in the fall with 500 diverse designers. We will be partnering with the Remesh platform to allow us to run this large, online focus group that will help us amplify the voices of diverse designers, while capturing valuable data and insights on individual experiences and sentiments.

Please join us on July 1, 2020 at 12:00 pm EST as we host a global call to explain and give context to each initiative.

The excuse of, “We can’t find them” is no longer valid. We are elevating ourselves!

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