Statement on Diversity, Inclusion, and Racial Equity Commitment in Theatre

We believe in the transformative power of the performing arts to expose, illuminate and celebrate our humanity. To shine a light on justice and injustice and on our commonalities and differences. To promote thought, reflection, and empathy. To experience the full spectrum of human emotion; joy, elation, hurt, anger, and grief. To transport us, educate us, and help us to view our complex world through a lens of greater understanding and respect for our fellow
humans. We live in a diverse world that deserves a workplace reflective of its people.

Work Light Productions (WLP) is dedicated to a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. We stand firmly against racism, discrimination, harassment, and hate.

We are committed to an action plan to ensure that we create and maintain such a workplace, and with that, we announce our commitment:

Direct

(Diversity, Inclusion, and Racial Equity Commitment in Theatre)

Following are the DIRECT actions that we have undertaken:

  • Brian Harlan Brooks has joined us in the newly created position of Director, Work Equity Action. Brian is known in our industry for his anti-racism work including his “Beyond the Thread” podcast, and is a respected Director and Choreographer. He will be consulting with WLP and helping to create mandatory Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Anti-Racism training for all executive leadership, staff, and touring companies across all of our shows. This will include an in-person session with our touring employees, as well as a written policy that every employee must sign prior to their first day on the job. Brian will work closely with General Managers and the Tour Management staff throughout the tour.
  • We have contracted with Blue Level Training, to provide virtual Diversity, Equity and Inclusion training for all employees to complete upon hire and prior to their first day of employment. BlueLevelTraining.com
  • In response to the demand for better training and support for hair care and maintenance that reflects our diverse community, we are committed to creating a responsive, respectful, and inclusive safer space for hair care on the road. This includes providing training for hair personnel, and ensuring that appropriate products are provided and stocked. We have heard your concerns and will continue to listen as we actively work to ensure that all employees are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.
  • Established a partnership with Vy Higginsen and The MAMA Foundation for the Arts including a new program called “Backstage with Work Light Productions” to identify and nurture emergent talented BIPOC students for professional opportunities at Work Light Productions and in the theatre industry at large. WLP has hired and remains committed to hiring candidates from this program. MAMAFoundation.org
  • Financial Accountability: WLP has pledged a recurring monthly donation to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund. Through our touring productions we have donated to The Black AIDS Institute, The Black Trans Advocacy Coalition, Color of Change, and continue to seek out dynamic organizations to support.

Through DIRECT we will strive to create safer, healthy, inclusive, diverse, and equitable workplaces and implement lasting change in our organization and across our productions.