Rethink the campaign

Rethink the campaign I wanted to respond to the government campaign about social inclusion. Although I certainly agree we need to work toward it and to educate the general public about the merits of an inclusive community, I have concerns the existing c

I wanted to respond to the government campaign about social inclusion.

Although I certainly agree we need to work toward it and to educate the general public about the merits of an inclusive community, I have concerns the existing campaign sends a mixed and negative message overall.

The large red signs that say “YOU can’t work here,” or “YOU don’t belong here” are very prominent and certainly catch your attention. The problem, I think, is that this sends a mixed message to “street people,” children, people of low literacy or with intellectual disabilities, tourists and others who may not understand the blue-coloured messages about social inclusion.

“Social inclusion” is a pretty abstract concept and is likely not understood by these and other groups.

Even if they had access to a computer and the website, they would be hard-pressed to understand the campaign.

In fact, we recently had two visitors from Alberta (in their mid-30s, educated) come to Yukon, and one of them commented on the signs and that they were quite taken aback by them. They didn’t understand what they were about until they happened to pick up an information sheet at one of the local coffee shops. (How many of the above groups frequent coffee shops or stores that might have this information?)

So what happens when people don’t see the other half of the message É the blue-coloured messages about social inclusion?

What kind of a “welcoming” community does this represent?

I would like the Yukon government and those responsible for the campaign to reconsider this campaign. I don’t believe the “messaging” is clear and it presents a rather negative community atmosphere.

Lillian Nakamura Maguire

Whitehorse