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I grew up in Surrey, BC but Surrey BC hasn’t grown up that much

surrey-civic-hotel-marriott-autograph-collection-17When I think about my hometown, the thing I think about most is Guns and Gangs. That’s because I grew up surrounded by guys who sold drugs and women who hid drugs in their bra’s. Cops didn’t search girls back in my day, because no male cop wants to get accused of sexual assault, which is…well let’s face it, if you’re selling drugs, an easy fucking out.

I cannot think of a more iconic image than this one, to define what our city Civic center looks like. It looks like a giant fucking gun, and at night, when you look up at the shining bright light, the logo looks like the Crooks and Castles logo. Now, either the developer has one huge ass sense of humor, or the City Council who approved this design were fucking idiots…the two are not mutually exclusive I have decided, because you have to actually really look at it from the right angle to realize that looks like a fucking cannon.

MP Harjit Sajjan announced in Surrey Friday (Sept. 6) a federal funding push for multiculturalism and anti-racism programs. That’s awesome, but where is that money going to really go?

Even when we hold these diversity events people who are random strangers don’t actually talk to each other. If you’ve ever been to the Fusion festival, which in of itself is an amazing event, people don’t actually talk to strangers, they merely push past each other and stick to their own people.

Sure, everyone loves a great event with live music and lots of different food, but no one “talks” to each other, and this is the point that I was trying to get at in my earlier post, here.

Ethnic Diversity isn’t going to destroy the world, but it’s not going to help our current problems either, not until we actually start talking to each other. Do you know why there are not many (if any, ever) women of color, specifically Indian women, blogging in Surrey BC? It’s not because these women don’t have anything to say, it’s because they are shamed into being quiet.

Either by their families, or by the average white man who doesn’t care what it is they have to say. Do you know how many Indian men I tried to sign up for the radio station I used to volunteer at who flat out told me, that no one wanted to hear their accent’s on the radio?

The sad truth is that they weren’t really wrong. When RED Radio was granted their license it was on the idea that it was going to be a diverse radio station with lots of different points of views. They cater to the Indian community.

I grew up being the only Half Black girl surrounded by white men in Surrey BC, and Indian women. By Indian I mean Aboriginal, Indian girls who hung out with us did not fare well, largely because they had massive addiction issues, and didn’t know how to “behave”. Because we had rules. The major rule was you didn’t get hammered and spread your legs for every guy who came your way…and if you did, you didn’t advertise it.

Which made it really easy for guys to get away with raping women, and then turning around and calling them sluts and whores when it was over. Girls in this city have gone far too long without having a voice, and now a whole bunch of money is being pushed around, and where is it going?

  • The non-profit Indus Media Foundation is to receive the most funding of any Surrey organization, with the government providing $366,000 for its “Duty, Honour and Izzat” project that highlights India’s First World War contributions. The funding will be used to create a series of short films about the “little-known story” of Punjabi-Canadians’ contributions in the First World War.

  • “Community workshops and opportunities for dialogue will also be organized to discuss issues of racism, discrimination, equity and media stereotyping,” the release adds.

  • Other Surrey groups to receive funding are the African Stages Association for its Africanada Storytelling Symposium ($6,797), the Fraser Region Aboriginal Friendship Association for its project titled “An Indigenous Perspective of Racism in Surrey” ($26,800), and the Royal Academy of Bhangra Society is receiving $25,000 for its “Folk Lok Live: This is Punjab” project, which is also receiving $15,000 for the initiative from the provincial government.

This information was from the Cloverdale Reporter thanks for letting me snag your facts.

Another shit ton of money is going towards helping kids as age as ten years old stay out of gang life and while that is a massive step, I am curious about what they plan to do about the girls in this city who still don’t feel as if their voice matters or is important in any way.

What about the girls who don’t choose to be with gang guys?  What about the girls who want to become artists, writers, creators, forge their own path and are told in a thousand ways that their voice doesn’t matter?

Someone made a comment on a social media platform called Whisper, saying that girls do nothing but get pregnant and go on welfare in this city, I hate to break it to you guy, but that’s not a choice we make freely. I know a lot of girls who got pregnant by guys who promised them the world and ended up in jail. I know a lot of women who give up a future of being anything more in favor of being “Wifey” for the rest of their lives. And while that may seem romantic ( ) to some, it’s not exactly a great way to pay the bills.

What the City of Surrey needs to be doing is focusing on it’s women, and pushing women in this city, who fail more, and work harder than any guy in this city has ever had to, and start inspiring them to believe that they can be more and I’m not just talking about gangs.

We need to cultivate and create initiatives that make women feel like they have a voice in this city that is not only worth listening to, but valued among the peers of men. Women in this city have voices that matter, and rather than spending all that money on festivals, and anti-gang groups that only support young boys, it’s time that the City of Surrey start recognizing that they are under utilizing the brutalized voices of the girls and women in this city.

But what do I know, I’m just a loud mouth brown girl,

Love Always,

Devon J Hall

 

 

 

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