As a community actor/organization in this country’s capital, Twice Upon a Time / Il était deux fois acknowledges the responsibility we have to the children and the families that we serve. The literature they ingest directly impacts their view on the world and we must do our part to consciously provide materials that will educate them on the reality we live in.
At Twice Upon a Time, we have always felt that books can open doors to a world providing understanding, compassion, and growth to those willing to read them and engage with their ideas. It is also crucially important that children are able to see themselves in the books they read, a privilege that is so cruelly and frequently denied to children of non-White backgrounds. To that end, we are committing to increasing our spending on new book acquisitions for books by and about people of colour. Our 2017 and 2018 project to purchase books by and about Canada’s Indigenous people was a start, but we must and will do better. Effective immediately, we will ensure even greater diversity in the books we purchase for our free libraries, particularly those with Black characters and by Black authors. And going forward we will make that commitment part of our ongoing documented guidelines for Twice Upon a Time.
As we continue our own learning, unlearning, and growth within our organization, we would also like to make clear our solidarity with people peacefully protesting police brutality and demanding accountability and justice. We extend our deepest sympathy, and commitment to do better for, to all those affected by recent events in both the United States and Canada. We say your names: George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Regis Korchinski-Paquet. Chantel Moore. Tony McDade. Abdirahman Abdi.
Our hearts and minds are open and listening. We welcome all discussions about how we can improve our work in the community.