Dear Evergreen area communities,
For over 10 years, Evergreen’s Alliance for Sustainability’s stated vision for Evergreen has been, “a mountain community in which all beings thrive and prosper in social, environmental, and economic harmony by honoring the interconnection, interdependence, as well as inclusivity in all of nature’s healthy systems. We see all human activity integrated with nature’s balance.”
It stands to reason then that of course we loudly and proudly state our support for the Black Lives Matter Movement.
But how does that translate to a small but mighty nonprofit serving a few small – mostly white – mountain communities?
Short answer: we’ve got work to do.
What we’ve been educating people on for years is the interconnectedness of all things. This is why our seemingly inconsequential choices of skipping another plastic bottle, or growing our own food at a community garden or at home, or choosing to live a minimalist lifestyle really do make a difference for the planet as a whole.
This work is certainly important, but let’s be honest: what a privilege we find ourselves in that our biggest daily problem may be that we forgot our reusable bags. Most of us can go bird watching without being harassed, we can get pulled over by the police without fearing for our lives, and we can hang out in our own home without fear that the police might arrive unwarranted and come in to shoot us and our families.
That is white privilege.
With privilege and power comes responsibility. Black communities need allyship and support in the form of people and organizations across the world to wake up to the long-standing tragedies of colonization, oppression, and racism and stand up to work for – as stated in our vision – “communit[ies] in which all beings thrive and prosper in social, environmental, and economic harmony…”
How can we stand by and say this is our vision but not acknowledge this interconnectedness requires us to stand up for other communities in crisis that are not our own?
To stand by in silence would be a failure to uphold our mission and vision.
Therefore Evergreen’s Alliance for Sustainability has resolved to take the following actions in light of recent events:
- As individual Board Members and employees, many of us are attending protests, making recurring (we think this is key) donations, making phone calls, sending emails, attending webinars, and educating ourselves in new ways to fight systemic racism and listening to leaders in the Black Lives Matter movement.
- Our June board meeting will be dedicated to deciding how we might take action as an organization to show solidarity with those fighting for social and racial justice in more tangible ways.
- We encourage our members and followers to not take lightly the cries of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor among hundreds of other innocent Black people dying at the hands of police. We encourage you to check out the following environmental organizations that are directly fighting for racial and social justice, and welcome other suggestions for organizations working for similar causes:
We hope that along with fighting for environmental justice, you’ll join us in the fight for social and racial justice as well.
The Evergreen Sustainability Alliance Team