The WGI Board of Directors; WGI Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee; and the WGI Future Leaders Program (FLP) are proud to announce the promotion and education of Inclusive Costuming.
As part of this education, WGI is publishing the “Inclusive Costuming Resources” listing—a running catalog of costuming and design companies that provide diverse skin-tone garments for members of color. Members of the Future Leaders Program first presented the concept during the WGI Board of Directors meeting in July 2021, and the project was immediately approved to move forward.
“While continuing conversations around implicit bias and microaggressions are vital, how groups approach decisions such as costuming choices through the lens of inclusivity creates real change we all can see,” said WGI Chief Executive Officer Ron Nankervis. “The initiative the Future Leaders have shown on this project is to be commended, and the WGI Board of Directors enthusiastically supports this effort to provide our participants with the tools they need to thrive in their activity.”
Based on FLP member research and past experiences, there has been a lack of diverse skin tone garments offered for members of color in the past. Many performers were only provided with “one size fits all” options or colors that are not inclusive to all skin tones. The goal of the Inclusive Costuming Resources list is to not only provide directors, instructors and performers with a list of more inclusive options, but to also educate and raise awareness about this topic and demand, says FLP Member Kennedy Riles.
“It is important for members of color to have costuming that reflects who they are and allows them to fully feel comfortable when they are performing,” echoes FLP Member Grantis Peranda.
As the Inclusive Costuming Resources list continues to develop, WGI strongly encourages all directors and instructors to keep this conversation in mind as you go about your costume ordering and custom design process.
“Every member should feel supported and reflected in costuming that is specifically made for all skin tones,” adds FLP Member Chaiya Odle.
To view the listing and learn more, please click the link below.
ABOUT THE FUTURE LEADERS PROGRAM: The I AM WGI: Future Leaders Program aims to lay the groundwork for mentorship of young leaders from the performer ranks of WGI. This program is a comprehensive mentorship and leadership opportunity for highly qualified young people from the performer ranks of WGI. Designed to foster the next generation of leaders in our activity, this exciting program will provide opportunities for Mentorship with the WGI Board of Directors, Outreach and Service to the WGI Community, and Collaboration with peers across the entire WGI community. Learn more about the program and see the first class of Future Leaders here!