33rd Annual Conference

March 8-12, 2021


Rural Small-to-Medium-Sized Canadian Businesses and Support for Religious, Spiritual, and Non-Religious Employees: A Case Study

75-minute Workshops

Day 5

Session Code: S8-E
When: March 12, 2021
Level: Introductory
Track: Global Diversity
Presenters: W. Y. Alice Chan, The Centre for Civic Religious Literacy (CCRL)  |  Paul Lambert, Religious Freedom & Business Foundation  |  Jayde Roche, Rural Development Network


This workshop introduces a pilot project that brings religious diversity initiatives to rural Canada. As DEI projects typically engage large businesses or urban centers, this project aims to support the social and economic well-being of rural cities by engaging with small-to-medium-sized businesses and Chambers of Commerce. Via interactive discussions, the presenters will share successes and challenges of this pilot to discuss common challenges in rural cities in general, as many cities see demographic changes with shifts in industry and politics.

This workshop will be a chance to think and problem-solve on the growing need to bridge DEI into non-urban and traditionally less religiously diverse spaces. Through religious diversity initiatives, this project also informs about racism that converges race and religion, such as anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.

Learning Outcomes

• Understand the challenges and areas of DEI need and opportunity in rural cities
• Understand the social and economic benefit of recognizing and supporting religious diversity
• Obtain new ideas and lessons-learned for participants’ own context

The Forum on Workplace Inclusion®
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