WAG Frequently Asked Questions

How do I join WAG?

  • Before January 23: register here
  • After January 23: In order to maintain a stable group dynamic, we ask late registrants to wait for the next cohort in September.  However you are welcome to start connecting with members of the community by dropping in to WAG Café sessions more info, here.

Where does WAG meet? Will you shift to in-person meetings?

  • To include UW Medicine members from across the WWAMI region, WAG will continue to meet using Zoom.
  • Additional opportunities for in-person community building may come up (especially if you want to organize them).

Do I have to attend every session?

We don’t require but strongly encourage consistent attendance February through May.

What happens a WAG session?

We start with a 20-minute large group talk facilitated by one of the WAG leaders, then transition to breakout rooms where groups of the same 6-10 people will have a facilitated discussion.

I’m really new to anti-racism, can I still come?

Yes.  All UW Medicine colleagues who want to engage with anti-racism work from a whiteness perspective are invited and welcome.  WAG is a great place to learn and build skills.

I’ve been doing anti-racism work for a while, will this group be worth my time?

We hope so, and would love your participation. We encourage all participants to engage a growth mindset no matter where they’re starting. We provide a wide range of action suggestions and discussion resources.  And we encourage each person to ask for the support they need to grow.  We are also looking for more experienced individuals to move into leadership and facilitator roles with us. That said, if you become bored or frustrated engaging with people who are less experienced, WAG might not be the right place to invest your energy.

I attended a previous WAG, should I come again?

Maybe.  The session topics will be very similar to your past experience, however interacting with new and different people in your small group will provide whole new learning and growth opportunities.

How to I talk to my supervisor about attending these meetings on paid time?

Providing successful affinity groups and the WAG is an important goal of the Office of Healthcare Equity, in the service of UW Medicine’s mission to become an antiracist organization.  While we currently do not have resources to provide for paid time for participants, we strongly encourage supervisors to support these opportunities for everyone in their work communities to the extent possible.

How is a group of folx focusing on whiteness going to actually improve anti-racism at UW Medicine?

First, we expect most members of this group to self-identify as white, given the topic, but the group is open to all who are interested. We do believe that becoming an antiracist institution requires white folx to participate in and demand growth and change across individuals and the system. WAG is a space for folx to work together to learn, challenge, and support each other in the hard work of personal and collective growth towards antiracist identities and behavior.  The WAG sessions and projects are informed by affinity group sessions for our Black, Latinx, NHAPI, and other marginalized colleagues, and by the stated goals of the Office of Healthcare Equity.

I might be interested, but “Anti-Racism” sounds so confrontational.  Why are you using that word?

While antiracism may sound confrontational to some, we do not see it that way and believe it is the right word to use. At UW Med, we define antiracism as “actively opposing racism with policies, practices, and behaviors, including efforts that decrease racial bias and inequities, produce equitable treatment for groups that have been historically marginalized, appropriately recognize racial identities and experiences of racism, and result in proportionate and appropriate accountability and justice in response to racism.”  If you uncomfortable with the term, you likely will not be the only one in WAG who feels that way.  WAG is a space to discuss that discomfort and seek support not letting the discomfort lead to avoidance of important action.