TransLink staff celebrate Canadian Multiculturalism Day

TransLink staff celebrate Canadian Multiculturalism Day

Photo of Priyanka Agrawal
Priyanka Agrawal

Canadians across the country celebrate Canadian Multiculturalism Day on June 27. It honours the many cultural communities that help build a strong and vibrant Canadian society.

To mark the day, TransLink’s iBelong Multicultural employee resource group (IBM ERG) held a series of events called “diversity week” to showcase our cultural diversity across the TransLink enterprise and to thank our colleagues from various cultural communities for their contributions. Priyanka Agrawal, a Business Analysis Specialist at TransLink, and Bereket Kebede, Manager of Power Systems at SkyTrain, led these events with the support of volunteers from the IBM ERG and Stephanie Redivo, TransLink’s Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.

Diversity week was kicked off by TransLink CEO Kevin Quinn, the sponsor of the IBM ERG. It began with a “wear your traditional outfit to work” day and a multicultural food festival. A cultural kaleidoscope presentation followed, showcasing the various countries and cultures of colleagues from Brazil, China, India, Iran, Nigeria, and South Korea through the lens of their lived experiences. The event culminated by playing a fun, online “Debunk my cultural myth” trivia game.

These events were held virtually, as well as in person at TransLink’s head office and at SkyTrain’s operations and maintenance centre. At these events, 100 staff from various cultures within the enterprise shared stories about their roots, their cultural attire, and the meals they ate growing up.​

“These types of multicultural events — and such holistic and authentic conversations — help us deliver together by building a culture of safety, trust, worth, and collaboration with our people and the communities we serve,” says Priyanka, who is co-chair of the IBM ERG with Bereket. “These events improve our understanding and tolerance towards one another so meaningful connections can be formed. It supports inclusion since it provides a deliberate environment where identities feel valued, and colleagues are seen and heard for who they are.”

Employee resource groups such as the iBelong Multicultural are voluntary employee-driven groups formed around common interests to advance inclusive, safe and accessible working environments.

In total, there are six employee resource groups at TransLink, including AccessAbility+Allies, Caregivers, Indigenous, Pride+Allies, and Women+Allies.

Here at TransLink, we’re committed to employment equity and building a diverse workforce that’s representative of the customers and the many communities we serve in the Metro Vancouver region.