Black Lives Matter

A Statement from EarthCorps

EathCorps believes in a world where people and nature thrive together. Recent events, including the murder of George Floyd, are a painful reminder that we are failing. Our world does not allow all people to thrive. Black lives matter. Enough is enough. 

EarthCorps stands in solidarity with the Black community and with People of Color hurt by the trauma of recent events and the systematic racism that is pervasive in America. We acknowledge the history of racial discrimination and environmental injustice that has harmed Black people, Indigenous Peoples, and People of Color for centuries. 

Protesters across our country are crying out for change. We are bearing witness to the Black community embracing fearlessness while holding immense grief, pain, and anger. We see Black people leading with love, compassion, and humility. We are in awe of the resiliency of the Black community. We hear the heartbreaking demands to end police brutality and to challenge the systems that perpetuate white supremacy. We must use our voices and our influence to speak up for change. 

EarthCorps is committed to advancing justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. We are committed to developing environmental leaders who represent the diversity of our society. We will work to better support and uplift Black leaders, and develop non-Black leaders who embrace racial equity. 

As a predominantly white-led organization, we know that we have a lot of work to do to better understand and address our own privilege, and to understand how maintaining the status quo undermines racial equity. We are grateful for the Black people and People of Color on our staff, in our corps, on our board, amongst our alumni, and with partner organizations who are far too patient as we work to do better. We will continue to listen, learn, and educate ourselves. We will continue to make space for processing and healing. 

It is not enough to say the “right words” in a statement or social media post; we have to be committed to undoing racism in our own organization. There isn’t a quick fix to end hundreds of years of systemic racism, but we all must be relentless and take responsibility for changing what falls under our own spheres of influence. That includes interrupting racism when we see it from friends, family members, or colleagues, or within our own organizations.

Last year, EarthCorps committed itself to addressing racism and building racial equity within our organization. This means white staff being called upon to do their own work of un-learning racism, and white staff listening to and uplifting the voices of staff members of color. This also means changing our systems: who and how we hire, who gets promoted, how we develop talent, who we partner with, how we share our resources, how we recruit for corps members, how we engage our white corps members in un-learning racism, and how we empower environmental leaders with competencies in racial equity. These actions are just a few of the steps that we know we need to take.

We call on other white-led environmental organizations to join us and to work together. We will challenge ourselves to do better and to be better partners in the fight against racial injustice. 

We are stronger together.