2011-05-08 Holland Sentinel LEDA Launches Stop Stereotypes Campaign

Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance Launches Stop Stereotype Campaign
Holland Sentinel

Holland, MI —

People up and down the Lake Michigan coast are uniting against stereotypes through the Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance’s new Stop Stereotypes Campaign.

The Stop Stereotypes Campaign includes a pledge to “see others for who they are ... not as I’m told they should be.”

“Stereotypes really impact everything — schooling, job opportunities, who you bring into your life,” said Raechel Haller, LEDA’s operations director. “When everyone contributes by taking steps away from stereotyping, it makes a huge impact in how we treat each other and perceive each other.”

LEDA produced a video showcasing area people holding up signs showing how they break from common stereotypes. In the video, Esperanza Watt holds up a sign that reads: “Second generation to serve my country.”

The video first shows the person holding up a blank sign, which allows viewers a few seconds to consider the person before the words appear.

Haller said this helps people ask important questions such as, “When we look at a face, what do we see? What do we assume? What do we miss?”

The campaign launched May 3-4 during the Calling All Colors conferences, where middle and high school students focused on understanding stereotypes and how to avoid acting on them.

Along with signing the pledge, the campaign also invites individuals to submit a photograph of a sign that tells how they personally break the mold of a stereotype.

The campaign includes tips on how individuals can make a difference, such as diversifying a circle of friends or becoming aware of stereotypes around them.