If you are part of an underrepresented group in OA, you may want to try a Special Focus Meeting. There are Special Focus Meetings for a variety of underrepresented groups. Some external websites listing these are shown below. Please note the time zone for each. All OA meetings are open to ALL members; however, Special Focus Meetings can help some members feel more at home.
Welcome to the Southern Arizona OA Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access Community page! We are so glad you are here.
The word “committee” is rooted in Western hierarchical practice whereas the word “community” promotes a collaborative, democratic approach where every voice is valued and encouraged. We do not have a single leader or chair but rotate responsibilities so that everyone shares the work.
“THE FELLOWSHIP encourages and promotes acceptance and inclusivity. All are welcome to join OA and are not excluded because of race, creed, nationality, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other trait. We welcome all who share our compulsion.” -WSO Statement on Diversity
Why are we talking about diversity and inclusion in program?
As members of OA, a part of service is reaching out to ALL those who suffer. Diversity work is central to creating welcoming spaces for people of diverse experiences. Doing both the internal work as individuals and the community work to create those spaces is key to attracting new members and maintaining healthy spaces for our current membership. The ability to uphold the Traditions and spiritual principles of the program depends on diversity, inclusion, access and equity. There can be no unity in the fellowship without first honoring our differences.
In 2020, the IDEA Community conducted a survey in order to 1) get to know our current local community, 2) understand the current level of diversity in the Southern Arizona Intergroup meetings and 3) start to understand any barriers to OA participation among current members.
To see the results of the survey and read more, please click below.
The purpose of the IDEA Community is two-fold. Its first purpose is to provide space for committee members to support each other’s individual learning and skill building around diversity work. Its second purpose is to support the Southern Arizona community in their learning and applications of diversity and inclusion both within our fellowship and in carrying the message to other suffering compulsive eaters.
The focus starts with HOW we are carrying the message not just that we are doing it.
It is neither kind nor compassionate to ask people to come to the group when the group hasn’t done its internal work. It is also unkind to expect people to know how to do th work for themselves. The committee’s focus will be on supporting the community in doing their internal work.
Current Community Goals:
Self-reflect and self-educate about how privilege and bias operate in our own (IDEA Community) lives and in OA. [Do internal work].
Bond as an IDEA Community.
Help OA members understand how privilege and bias operate in their own lives and in OA.
Help OA members understand how to make their meetings more welcoming to underrepresented groups.
Help OA members understand how to effectively carry the message to underrepresented groups.
Meetings provide a vital connection for our members and OA-curious people. Most of us find that the more we listen to each other the more we realize how alone we are NOT. If suffer from food and/or body obsession, shame or any of the many negative emotions that come with untreated food addiction please, attend six different meetings before you decide if OA is for you.
If you are part of an underrepresented group in OA, you may want to try a Special Focus Meeting. There are Special Focus Meetings for a variety of underrepresented groups. Some external websites listing these are on our special focus page in the meetings menu above. Please note the time zone for each. All OA meetings are open to ALL members; however, Special Focus Meetings can help some members feel more at home.
And don’t forget our tradition of anonymity to those outside of the meetings: