Sweet Adelines International openly recognizes our racist history, a past that saw the organization ban membership for women of color. It is an ugly truth we acknowledged at our 2016 convention, and since then we have worked — in videos and in The Pitch Pipe — to educate our members about this truth and how we are working to use the history as a catalyst for our inclusion and equity work of today. We believe it’s important to be clear about what happened in the past, because racism and discrimination were unacceptable then and they are something we will not tolerate now.
We are taking steps NOW to make this an organization that celebrates our differences and makes ALL its members feel welcomed. We’re doing that in many ways, from the creation of our Diversity and Inclusion Task Force to the development of a comprehensive toolkit that soon will be available as a resource for chapters to give members the tools they need to help welcome members who come from different ethnic and racial backgrounds, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and people from varied religions.
Sweet Adelines International is committed to addressing and condemning racism, discrimination, and other forms of inequity not only with our words but with our actions.
We celebrate our differences as essential to the rich harmony that unites us. As we recognize barbershop’s African American origins and learn from our exclusionary past toward women of color, we reject discrimination and unwaveringly strive toward greater awareness, openness, and understanding of each other.
We create harmony where every voice matters. We foster a culture that provides a joyful place to share our uniqueness within a global community united in song.