Student Community Groups

Allyship Position Statement – Dalhousie University, School of Nursing

The following is a position statement that has been developed for and by the coalition of Black, Indigenous, 2SLGBTQ, and International student interest groups at Dalhousie University, School of Nursing. This coalition aims to represent the diversity within the nursing profession and is committed to building capacity within our institution to determine how to be inclusive toward members of equity seeking groups. The coalition’s understanding of allyship and the role of allies will evolve over time in relation to the work being done. 

The coalition requires time to develop shared goals to overcome divisive boundaries, which hinder our solidarity and persist in relation to histories wrought with colonialism, racism, heterosexism, and eurocentrism. This position statement is based upon shared values within the coalition pertaining to allyship. The future inclusion of allies will come as a result of solidarity that is demonstrated by engaging in this relational process. At this time, a relationship with allies that is grounded in trust, consistency, and accountability will be made possible through a shared recognition that time and space is necessary to ensure ongoing and accumulating harms (which are experienced as a result of systemic inequities) do not hinder the coalition’s ability to achieving its capacity building goals. 

Allyship is defined as, “an active, consistent, and arduous practice of unlearning and re-evaluating, in which a person in a position of privilege and power seeks to operate in solidarity with a marginalized group.”1 We understand allyship to be an ongoing and relational process where “relationships [are] based on trust, consistency, and accountability with marginalized individuals and/or groups of people.”1 We recognize that allyship is grounded in responsibility and is acknowledged as such by the individuals and groups with which allyship is sought.1 

The first priority of the coalition will be to determine how equity and inclusion can be promoted within our institution. Personal, collective, and generational traumas necessitate that we are permitted adequate time and space to become united under common goals. Although our work is centred around Black, Indigenous, 2SLGBTQ, and International students, those interested in our mandate will be welcomed to join as allies. We are currently organizing to determine what kind of support is needed by the coalition from members of faculty, students within the school of nursing, Dalhousie Graduate Nursing Society (DGNS), Dalhousie Undergraduate Nursing Society (DUNS), and the general student population, which will be central to this work. During this period of organization, if there are additional student interests that are not addressed by the existing coalition, it is important that concerns are brought to the attention of faculty. 

1.“Allyship,” The Anti-Oppression Network,