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  • Kimberly Kayler

How to be an Ally - Tools for Speaking Up


While speaking up is hard, there are some tools for interrupting:

  • Stop: invite the person to stop what they are saying or doing. There is not a focus on education because it is not possible. Nevertheless, the action is harmful and needs to stop.

  • Ask Questions: Bring the conversation back to facts instead of emotions. Use cognitive questions because that keeps conversations focused on whatever faces are present.

  • Felt-Found-Feel: Identification and keeping it in the ”I”; teachable moment/educate; model change

  • State what actually happened: Ask some uncomfortable questions (i.e., “I don’t get that. Why did you ask me that?” Reinforce that good intentions are not the point. “I can see this is making you uncomfortable, but this is a real issue that needs to be addressed.”

  • Long-Term Education: through ongoing relationships, engage in dialogue and education regarding these issues


Putting allyship into action: Consider a situation in which you choose to serve as an ally. How would the conversation go? How can you diffuse heightened emotions?


Are you ready to start your DEI journey? Reach out to AOE today.


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