We believe in Inclusivity
As the events of the last few weeks have unfurled and had a global resonance, I have been thinking about my stance. and about whether it is appropriate to make a statement or just continue along as I have been doing.
Here is the thing. If I make a statement, could it be viewed that I am making a statement just “to be seen to be making a statement”? And, relatively speaking, my voice is considerably smaller than others. However, if we all stay silent, then our silence becomes complicity and whilst my one voice may be small, many small voices with the courage to speak up will become significant when joined together.
My own stance, and that of Redwell Games, is to strive for equality and inclusivity.
To explain a very simple sentence in more depth.
I am a white male. I almost certainly have benefited, whether knowingly or unknowingly, from white privilege or unconscious bias throughout my life. I could be part of the problem, but I don’t want to be.
When I was a school I didn’t understand racism. I had no experience beyond a very homogenised existence. I grew up in a small town in Suffolk where most of my peers were white and typically from a heterosexual and Christian background. This photo from my final year in sixth form shows at least an element of this. At this time of my life, being different would have been an oddity.
Within a year of this photo being taken, I was an undergraduate at Imperial College London and my horizons broadened considerably. I met and made friends with people from across the UK and across the globe. People from vastly different upbringings, religious beliefs and sexual orientations. I learnt much more than just my Biochemistry degree over the 3 years I was at Imperial College.
I was lucky to continue to be part of such a diverse community during my career as an academic researcher. During this time, through natural discussion, I could find out more about those from other backgrounds. But, I also made mistakes due to my ignorance/lack of knowledge of other cultures. I have tried to learn from these mistakes to avoid making them again in the future.
I cherish the diverse community I was part of. Before I left academia I was part of the University of Sheffield Medical School’s Athena SWAN committee which promotes equality and representation in Higher Education and Research.
So for me, I want to promote diversity and inclusivity.
I disagree with racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, transphobia, islamophobia, anti-semitism and any other form of discrimination.
I support peaceful protests and disagree with needless violence, whether perpetrated by those in power and abusing their authority, or those using a protest as an excuse.
Redwell Games’ Pledge
As Redwell Games, I strive to follow these principles.
- We will always support inclusivity.
- Rules will be written in a gender neutral manner.
- As far as it is possible and appropriate, there will be a fair balance of genders and ethnicities in the characters and artwork. We want anyone to be able believe they could be a character in our games.
- Game components will not be differentiated by colour alone. Clear iconography and/or easily discernible differences will be used to facilitate enjoyment of our games by anyone with impaired colour vision.
In 2018, someone asked me whether the “Theme” card below from our improvisation-based party game, Vote Me was appropriate. Yes, it could be used in a racist manner. I specifically tried to avoid directing people towards this by giving the card the title “Colours” instead of “Colour”. Did I get this right? I chose to include the card in the game, because we use so many colours as adjectives in such a variety of ways. For example, finances referred to being “in the red or in the black”; green used in reference to inexperience or in reference to environmental concerns. However, as four of the six example colours on the card can be used to describe skin colour, should I have used a different combination of colours?
As humans, there are times where we get things right, and times where we get things wrong. When we discover we have got things wrong, it becomes our responsibility to strive to avoid repeating our mistakes. I will always be grateful to those who will tell me I have got things wrong. To those who have been prepared to educate me. This way I can correct my mistakes or misunderstandings and strive to avoid repeating them.