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Doing anti-oppression work […] is not only about confronting individual examples of bigotry or societal examples, it is also about confronting ourselves and our own roles of power and oppression in our communities and in the general context." - Stephanie Jeremie, La Forge. Anti-oppression involves deconstructing the oppressive ideas of the dominant culture that one has internalized (i.e. sexism, the patriarchy, racism, ableism etc).

Why is anti-oppressive work so critical?

We have been socialized in cultures founded on layers of oppression. We perpetuate what we are socialized into unless there are active efforts to learn and counter the harmful behaviours, situations and ideas that were present when we were born into this world. Our oppressive actions divide us, diminish large groups of people, and inhibit our ability to organize broad-based movements that can win.

Examples of anti-oppression

No single workshop will lead to the unlearning of our socialization within a culture built on multiple forms of oppression. Anti-oppressive work is constant; it does not have an end and must be a continuous effort.

The examples mentioned here are by no means comprehensive. See our definitions page for intersectionality and oppression for more examples of the identifying factors where people may face systems of oppression. 


  • The push for collective care through the wearing of masks during the pandemic, specifically to protect the lives of immunocompromised, chronically ill and/or disabled people is an example of anti-ableism.
  • The principles of disability justice help to describe how actions such as challenging capitalism, collective access and leadership of the most impacted challenge ableism. For the full list of 10 principles, see this example from Sins Invalid.


See anti-racism.


See anti-colonialism.


  • Advocating for homosexual representation in film and tv, or standing in solidarity with LGBTQIA2S+ individuals by challenging heterosexual norms, are examples of being anti-homophobic.

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