Sometimes people in marginalized or impoverished situations get invited to participate in surveys, group sessions and focus groups. What I wonder is, who are these data collection gatherings actually for? In theory, the basis is to help the marginalized and/or impoverished to receive better access to the necessary services. Of course, these services are in fact defined by social and government designs. What does this mean? Well for me - being considered "marginalized" or “living in poverty,” I get to participate in the process that will inevitably help me maneuver through the system. A system designed with bias.
“I was waiting at the bus stop and there were Indigenous people standing around. And I looked at the ground. I was waiting in the grocery line and there were Indigenous people in front of me and behind me. And I looked at the ground. I was with my children at the library, looking for a book. There were Indigenous people in the same aisle as me. And I looked at the ground. But after learning about Canada’s Indigenous history, after talking to Indigenous people and learning about them, I don’t look at the ground anymore. I look them in the eyes, and I say hello.”