YRP Honourees 2022
York Region Police (YRP) Portraits of Giving Honourees for 2022 are Sergeant Mina Rahravan, serving within the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Bureau, and Strategic Communications Specialist, Susan Gibbs. These two individuals are being recognized for the positive work they have done in building key partnerships with our community stakeholders and for the work they have done internally at YRP, to support, educate, and raise awareness to and for 2SLGBTQ+ individuals. Commended for their courage, leadership, perseverance, and kindness, Mina and Susan were also awarded the Herbert H. Carnegie Community Award in 2022.
The work that Susan and Mina have undertaken to improve YRP partnerships and relations with the 2SLGBTQ+ community is vast. Working collaboratively with several partners through both the 2SLGBTQ+ Chief’s Community Consultative Roundtable and on a variety of events has ensured that YRP is knowledgeable and can respond in a timely fashion when things go wrong. These relationships can only be fostered through open communication channels, mutual respect, and putting in the work. Both Mina and Susan are committed to doing this work, additional examples of which include outreach initiatives for 360°kids soccer and baseball games and education sessions, and creating #LoveisLove Valentine’s Day initiatives for both youth and seniors in the community.
Within YRP, they have created important training for members through their Positive Space program and 2SLGBTQ+ Awareness sessions. These initiatives bring together members across the organization to have open and honest conversations and foster a better understanding of the work that needs to be done to build positive and constructive community partnerships.
Together, Mina and Susan’s mission of creating safe spaces and events to encourage meaningful dialogues helps provide significant platforms for changing minds and opening hearts to human differences, in particular, sexual diversity with respect to the 2SLGBTQ+ community. Shifting perspectives allows everyone to live fully and embrace their own uniqueness as a powerful asset.
The most precious reward for Mina and Susan has been to witness how advocating for celebration and inclusion of human diversity has empowered and given courage to those who have feared taking steps towards living their authentic self without being afraid of being discriminated, marginalized, and/or judged. The message of authenticity and inclusion is a universal one that needs to be echoed globally and it must be spoken about; it transcends race, ethnicity, gender, religion, abilities, and all our differences, and it unifies the human family. Authenticity is essential just like air, for a happier, better, and more equitable society. It is the oxygen that we all need to strive and to grow.