Privilege, Bias and Microaggression

On Wednesday, Aug 25, Points of Light and the Minnesota Association for Volunteer Administration led a conversation exploring identity, privilege, bias and microaggressions. As we navigate working with colleagues in new settings from hybrid to work from home models, it is important to build awareness of the common biases and microaggressions that may occur in the physical or virtual workplace, especially towards BIPOC employees.

Conversation Key-Takeaways

  • Unconscious bias can show up as microaggressions, which are verbal and nonverbal slights and insults, whether intentional or unintentional, that demean, insult or invalidate a person and remind culturally marginalized groups that they are outsiders.
  • It is important to increase your awareness of unconscious bias and microaggressions by educating yourself, recognizing and reflecting on your own behaviors and understanding that good intentions can still have harmful impacts.
  • It is important to remember everyone has identifies that are both visible (gender, ethnicity) and invisible (disabilities, socio-economic status, education level).

Watch the Conversation On-Demand

Meet the Speakers

Brittany Clausen, DEI Program Manager, Minnesota Alliance for Volunteer Advancement 

Brittany Clausen is a social change agent focused on dismantling systemic oppression for communities of color in the Twin Cities. She currently serves as the DEI Program Manager for the Minnesota Alliance for Volunteer Advancement (MAVA). At MAVA, she helps volunteer professionals to engage with their communities through creative strategy and uprooting oppressive volunteer engagement practices. Brittany is the Founder and Visionary Strategist of Envision Greatness. She serves on the NASW-MN Chapter Racial Justice Subcommittee and St. Catherine University’s Inclusive Excellence Advisory Board. Brittany holds a B.A. in Psychology from Saint Catherine University and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in social work.

Wendy Vang-Roberts, Training Manager, Minnesota Alliance for Volunteer Advancement 

Wendy Vang-Roberts is MAVA’s Training Manager. Prior to joining the MAVA staff, Wendy served on MAVA’s Inclusive Volunteerism Task Force and provided training on inclusive volunteer recruitment. She previously worked at Literacy Minnesota in a variety of student, volunteer and national service (AmeriCorps VISTA) outreach and recruitment roles. She most recently managed volunteer and adult learner outreach, coordinated support and professional development for volunteer coordinators and facilitated racial justice trainings for staff and volunteers at Adult Basic Education programs statewide. Wendy serves on the boards of Antiracism Study Dialogue Circles (ASDIC) Metamorphosis and Asian American Organization Project (AAOP). She holds a Master of Public and Nonprofit Administration from Metropolitan State University, and is a first-generation Hmong American.

Conversation Resources