AU1.5 – Understanding Privilege

Bystander to Ally

Have a look at the following image and then watch the video where David and Emma will talk you through the steps for moving from Bystandter to Ally.

In the following video, Emma Symonds and David Corbin discuss how Bystanders can become Allies

What is Privilege?

Privilege is often used but not always understood. This Wheel of Power/Privilege demonstrates how society values particular characteristics over others, or in layman’s terms prefers some types of people over others.

If you look at Emma’s wheel at the bottom, you will see that she is quite far from privilege as a child and as a teen (Skin colour, education, middle class/poor)

As she became part of the working world, It became more apparent that she was still fairly far from privilege (Skin colour, education, some disability, mostly stable mental Health (racial abuse is rather unsettling), Average body size (bullying lead me to comfort eating) Middle class).

All these things didn’t change the drives she had to succeed in her life, It just became apparent that she would need a leg up to do it. Her skin colour was a barrier for some.

She has met incredible people who are much nearer that POWER dynamic on the wheel who have truly understand the challenges faced as a black woman with hidden disabilities and societal barriers to overcome. These allies have been proactive in their learning and understanding, encouraging in their approach to her development opportunities and at times have stood up against the status quo, putting themselves in the firing line for what they know to be wrong.

She has achieved her goals through her own determination but it would have been so much harder without her allies.

The Wheel of Power/Privilege


The experience of being “tolerated”, rather than accepted, leads to lower wellbeing among ethnic minority groups

Supporting disabled staff in the workplace

Understanding LGBT+ employee networks in the NHS

Collapse Comments
Evangeline Martinez June 18, 2023 at 5:03 pm

Learning a lot from David and Emma and this video is a powerful example of fearless allyship done with love. Would love to hear more about ‘acceptance’ versus ‘tolerance.’ Examples please.

Gloanne Marie LAPUZ-FLORES September 1, 2023 at 4:04 pm

Having the guts to speak up really counts!

First time to hear the term, Allyship. Very powerful information. Thank you.

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