To Our Tanglewood Nature Center Family,
We are saddened, angered, and frustrated by the continual issues of racism affecting our country, which includes the death of George Floyd and many others. Tanglewood joins with all of you who believe that enough is enough.There have been just over two weeks where people all over the world have been rising up, and this makes us heartened and hopeful, but there is a long road ahead.
Why should Tanglewood make a statement at all? Because we are a cultural organization that cares about our community. And, because environmentalism and racism have always been tied together. Environmental groups and nature center staff, boards and clientele are often not diverse. Environmental health concerns in communities of color are virtually ignored. In the US, more people of color live with air pollution than white people do, and one of the reasons more people of color are dying from COVID-19 than white people is because of these environmental injustices. Although Tanglewood is aware of these issues, we haven’t followed through enough from knowledge to action. We know we have much to do to ensure we are more inclusive, responsible and equitable to all people in our community. We commit to being part of the solution by sharing the voices and experiences of people of color in nature and environmental education, and sharing the work of environmental justice organizations. We will diversify and educate our Board and staff. We believe our role is not only to be a leader in environmental education, but also to stand in solidarity with those working for long-past-due systemic change.
For the past 47 years, through our educational programs and communications with the public, we have asked you to advocate on behalf of the environment. Today, we ask you to join us in rejecting brutality and racism, and in building an anti-racist community and region. Raise your voice and let elected officials know you demand concrete and immediate steps to create a more fair and just world. Contribute your time and money to organizations that fight systemic racism. Then don’t stop. For us to create real change, we need to commit together to a long-term, never-ending fight for justice, equity and belonging.
Tanglewood Nature Center & Museum