Anti-Oppression Statement: Our Commitments & Practices

We want you to know our values and practices so you can feel informed, think about whether our work fits for you, and choose what’s best from a place of connection and resonance. This statement includes information about us, our positionality, our commitment to anti-oppression work, racial justice and equity, our teachers and lineage, and the business practices we’ve implemented to mitigate inequity. We consider this to be a living document, as we are ongoing learners, listeners, vulnerable community members, and whole-hearted human beings who are highly fallible and always growing.

We have co-owned the Center for Body Trust since 2006. We do this work with the unearned privileges extended to us as white, cis, non-disabled, educated, upper middle class women of small- and mid-fat size. We are committed to examining and re-examining the ways we offer and develop our work over time. We push ourselves to be actively anti-racist as clinicians and business owners, and since 2015, we have been actively working to dismantle the ways white supremacy culture shows up in our organization.

Center for Body Trust promotes equity and inclusion as a core value in our work. We recognize all types of diversity including and not limited to size, ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, age, class, citizenship status, religion and abilities. As a company, we welcome the ways this diversity deepens our shared understanding of the applications of this work. We celebrate and honor the strength, creativity and growth that comes from experiencing different viewpoints, backgrounds and cultures.

We read, listen to, learn from, and attend anti-racism workshops with Black teachers. We seek ongoing training and consultation with equity and inclusion facilitators, and are continually working to make our offerings and business as inclusive as possible while operating within a capitalist system. These consultants evaluate new programs we create. We see this as a long-term commitment and process which unfolds at the speed of relationship and under the guidance of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) consultation.

Body Trust® is heavily informed by social justice movements and has been greatly influenced by Niva Piran’s Developmental Theory of Embodiment, Bobbie Haro’s Cycle of Socialization and Cycle of Liberation, Black Feminist Theory (Audre Lorde, bell hooks), Desiree Adaway’s Liberatory Praxis, Barbara Love’s Liberatory Consciousness, The Fat Underground, the Health at Every Size® movement, intuitive eating principles, shame resilience theory, motivational interviewing, self-compassion theory, relational-cultural theory, harm reduction, and post-modern therapeutic thought. We have spent 18+ years together learning, teaching and fine-tuning our approach. We are committed to maintaining a lifelong learning posture. We consider this essential to doing the work we do at Center for Body Trust.

Body Trust is relational work and our teaching style follows suit. Our facilitation is always evolving as well as our collaborations with co-facilitators and co-creators. We prioritize helping people understand the oppressive structural roots of diet culture and weight-centric models of healthcare but we are not equity and inclusion facilitators nor are we anti-racism educators. We don’t believe that one can promote health and healing without a social justice analysis and we are committed to helping people develop a liberatory consciousness and get connected to resources and teachers outside of Center for Body Trust to help them further their journey.

Our intention in our workshops, retreats, and professional trainings is to hold space and offer experiences to help mitigate the impact the culture has on people when it doesn’t mirror their wholeness. We see and know how oppression and discrimination, as well as the furthering of the thin, cis, white, non-disabled body ideal, has created conditions that repeatedly reinforce trauma, stigma, shame and othering, and separated people from their bodies and their own knowing, voice and truth. 

Our workshops, retreats and professional trainings are often white-dominant spaces and we are committed to including as diverse a representation of people, teachers and co-facilitators as possible. We acknowledge the potential for harm to occur in multiracial spaces, therefore we co-create a container for maintaining an inclusive space, and provide education and guidelines regarding conflict, microaggressions, and giving/receiving feedback. We also offer affinity space for many of our programs. We encourage all participants to investigate/name identities and intersections. We aim to decenter our own identities while centering lived experience as much as possible. We invite and pay speakers and contributors with marginalized identities, and we amplify the work of marginalized voices in our curriculum and resources.

Our learning is not always sufficient and our dominant identities, including whiteness, have the potential to betray us. We have caused harm and we can not be immune from doing so again. When we cause harm, we offer and engage in an accountability process with the parties harmed and an independent teacher and work towards repair (when possible).

Additional anti-oppressive practices we’ve committed to:

We live and work on the unceded land of the Cowlitz and Clackamas people. We grapple with what it means to live here as settlers – and thus uninvited residents – and acknowledge that our presence here impedes a way of life. We are committed to justice and restitution for indigenous people and we began  “paying the rent” in 2020 by giving 1% of our annual income to local indigenous led organizations including the Native American Youth & Family Center.

We participate in accountability groups with other colleagues to ensure we are true to our values, this statement, and our commitments to growth and change.

As a practice, we offer employees reimbursement for ongoing anti-racism and anti-oppression training.

We pay our consultants, colleagues, guest speakers and co-facilitators for their labor and collaboration. We prioritize ordering services, such as catering, from BIPOC owned businesses in the Portland Metro area.

We regularly sponsor educational conferences and efforts that center marginalized voices and experiences in the field. This year we sponsored the Association for Size Diversity and Health (ASDAH), BIPOC Eating Disorder, FEDUP Collective, and Weight Stigma Conferences, as well as an educational series by RDs for Neurodiversity.

Center for Body Trust embodies values, policies and practices to create access to the resources we offer. Black, Indigenous and People of Color, trans and non-binary folks, queer people, super and infinifat folks, and people with disabilities are disproportionately impacted by barriers to healthcare and wellness services due to systemic and institutionalized systems. We wish to push back against this impact by offering a three-tiered pricing structure: equity, standard and standard plus. People who can pay the standard and standard plus price for our services create the capacity for others to access support, helping us meet everyone’s needs. A minimum of 25% of the spaces available in our programs are reserved for equity pricing, and we always have low/no cost spots set aside for people who need to request additional equity pricing. In 2022, 14 people were granted very low/no-cost spots in our Certification Program and 52 joined at the equity price. In our 2023 Certification cohort, 23 low/no-cost spots were granted and 31 people joined at equity pricing. In our 2024 Certification cohort, 33 low/no-cost spots were granted and 36 people joined at equity pricing. Our aim is to make our programs available to anyone who wants to join us, while also compensating our team, speakers and guest teachers with a sustainable wage for their brilliance, time, and labor.

We are committed to making our work as accessible as possible for everyone, as access-centered exchange of information benefits all of us, not just people with disabilities and audio/visual impairments. We strive to make all of our content screen-reader friendly and all recorded videos and live webinars include closed captions and/or transcripts. We also invite all of our program participants to make additional requests for accommodations.

Three years ago we established our Body Trust Fund as a tool for mutual aid in our community. People in our programs can apply for resources to support their process of learning and becoming. This has looked like requests for books, resources from our online store as well as other items like gender affirming binders that may be necessary for well-being but out of reach financially. Donations we receive go into this fund as well as 75% of the proceeds from our online store.

We appreciate you taking time to read this statement. We do not expect or believe we are the right teachers for everyone, and we are interested in supporting you to find teachers who do work best for you. We maintain a list of teachers, writers, activists and clinicians who lead with their invaluable lived experience of marginalization by dominant culture, and we are happy to email you upon request.

Last Updated: June 2024

Skip to content