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Showing Our Work

Talking Accountability ain't Easy!

In January 2024, Firebird staff engaged with the brilliant Dr. S Simmons to help us explore collective responsibility, or community accountability.

His approach is rooted in principles of accountability and transformative justice. Above is one resource he shared defining accountability in this way. Really want to nerd out? Here’s a whole playlist!

He introduced Firebird staff to a valuable and impactful process to go through when preparing for a difficult conversation relating to accountability:

Regulation (whether planned or unplanned)
Systems self-check

  1. What are your bodily signals of distress and unease?
  2. What might you need when feeling distress and/or unease?

We don’t generally want to maintain relationships with people we don’t like, with people we don’t have investment in. Think about willingness and readiness–Do we have a relationship that makes difficult conversation worth having?

What happened?


  1. What do you know about the context of what happened?
  2. How is identity involved?
  3. What is your relative position of power?

Acknowledge the awarenesses of context, identity and power internally and potentially externally

Exploring Possibilities
Where can you go from here?


  1. Listening
  2. Apology (for what this really entails see here)
  3. Self-Reflection
  4. Material reparations

Next steps and things we’re working on include:

🔍 Build trust by continuing to add clarity and transparency to structure and processes

✍️ Name and discuss our values as explicit and connected to lived realities, but stated as aspirational continual works-in-progress.

🧐 Engage in self-reflection on our identities and positionality.

Stay tuned for more on those as we continue to show our work!