2nd International Integration Day

Cardiff Senedd, 9 October 2019

 

Good evening. Before I start, I would like to say a big ‘Thank You’ to Dr Roy and the organization of NWAMI for having me over. With your kind permission,  I would like to extend a little bit on address by the Rt Hon. First Minister of Wales and reflect on the purpose  of  Awareness  of  Multicultural  Integration. Multicultural Integration in simple terms is

 

just like when you’ve got coffee that’s too strong

So, what do you do?

You integrate it with cream

And you make it week

But if you pour too much cream

You won’t even know you had coffee…

(Malcolm X)

 

This analogy reflects the two components of integration: Stability to the community on one hand and acculturation, not assimilation, on the other. Acculturation implies that native members of a host country share traits which immigrants still must attain. This is likely leading to a decrease in cultural diversity.

Like it or not, multiculturalism is a bed of beautiful roses full of thorns, so we just have to be careful not to get pricked or to prick one another.

Regardless the challenge, we have to acknowledge that we are living within  a  highly  fluid  multicultural  society  which  is  becoming  even more diverse and as leaders, educators and service providers, it is our job to ensure everyone feels included and empowered in order to help community cohesion develop.

A cohesive community is one in which people will want  to live and invest.  A  quality  of  community  cohesion  can  be  measured  by  how people feel about their local area, as it is also a measure of how well different  minority  and  majority  communities  develop  and  relate  to each other.

Therefore, promoting multicultural integration for building cohesion within   and   between   communities   is   an   essential   step   towards improving people’s quality of life.

It is important that we become aware of the fact that everyone of us has a cultural identity along every dimension of human diversity and it  would  help,  if  we  start  taking  more  responsibility  for  our  own contribution to social oppression, but also to social wellbeing.

Multicultural integration raises the question who we are as people and how we relate to each other. Therefore

I would like end my brief note with some reflective thoughts. Please feel free to take them home with you:

 

What does it mean to me to be:

my race

my ethnicity

my gender

my social class

my sexual orientation

my age

my abilities

my status?

what unearned privileges have I enjoyed and for what reason?

 

I  am  Maria-Gabriele  Doublesin  and  I  thank  you  for  giving  me  the privilege to share my thoughts with you today.

 

Good evening