Executive Director, Nancy Gagnier and Program Director, Audrey Rowe from the South Orange Maplewood Community Coalition on Race spoke to our members and future members this morning at St. James’s Gate on Implicit Bias.

Unconscious or Implicit biases are thoughts and actions formed by our brains creating shortcuts to process the countless pieces of information we encounter daily and are informed by media, news, societal norms, and our experience.

Some of these shortcuts are:

  • things other people tell us
  • media portrayals
  • institutional influences
  • other external influence.

Nancy and Audrey pointed out the different kinds of unconscious biases we as individuals have and how to overcome them. They discussed ways to identify and address implicit bias which include:

  • develop an awareness about implicit bias- awareness of unconscious bias can lead to reversals in biased outcomes
  • challenge current negative biases- consciously contrast negative stereotypes with specific counter- examples
  • increase opportunities for contact with individuals from different groups to develop meaningful, ongoing relations

We thank Nancy and Audrey for a very helpful discussion for our business community!