My Thoughts on Changing Community Living Month to Community Inclusion Month

 By Sheenagh Morrison (Victoria, B.C.)


Members of the diversability community use to call October Community Living Month, now myself and most people call it Community Inclusion Month. I prefer the term Community Inclusion Month more than Community Living Month because to me, we are all living and when I hear the word “Living,” I feel that I am getting judged. When I hear the word “Inclusion,” it makes me feel proud that I have a job at a place that makes everyone feel included in the community.

When I go out with my friends I feel that I’m part of the community and that I belong. When I go to the legislative building I feel included, that I’m part of a conversation and that makes me feel proud.

A couple of years ago I was at a meeting with Inclusion BC and that’s where I first heard the term Community Inclusion Month. I had a big smile on my face because it wasn’t Community Living Month any longer. Hearing the title Community Inclusion Month was important to me.

So I would love it if we could change the title to Community Inclusion Month everywhere. Here in Victoria, I feel like I’m included and part of the community: at work; the legislative building; rec centres; and in coffee shops.  I also feel included when I’m at a Victoria Royals hockey game, and at a rugby game.  I feel included and part of a place that makes me feel like I’m part of the community.

There are a few coffee shops in Victoria that hire people with a diversability. They’re meant to be inclusive places as well as a workplace that hires people that have a diversability.

I feel like I belong and that I am included with my work friends when we go out in the community. I am part of the conversation. When I hear Community Living Month in conversation I don’t feel as proud as when I hear Community Inclusion Month.

Next year I might get Community Inclusion Month proclaimed by the city of Victoria.

[soliloquy id="25360"]

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