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About

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District

Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) believes all people deserve improved and sustainable quality of life through clean water, healthy soil, and diverse habitats.

We acknowledge that historic and continued systemic racism have created and maintain vast disparities in our community, including unequal access to environmental benefits. In the pursuit of environmental justice, we recognize Cuyahoga SWCD’s role as a leader in environmental education and services- embracing courageous dialogue, while amplifying and making space for disadvantaged communities and voices. We denounce all forms of racism, oppression, bigotry, and aggression and recognize the continued work that must be done to combat these actions within our own work and in our community.

We are committed to engaging and listening to all residents of Cuyahoga County as full and equal partners with respect for the history, culture, and traditions of each community. We commit to acting in solidarity and with purposeful mutual support of all partners engaging in the environmental field. We pledge to make Cuyahoga SWCD an accessible and inclusive organization where each person we engage feels valued, supported, and safe to be their authentic self. In our work we encourage and embrace biodiversity, in turn we embrace and value the differences that make each person and community unique, including race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, national origin, language and culture, immigration status, socioeconomic circumstance, ability and disability, political ideology, religious belief, age, and more.

We feel a responsibility to take action and continue learning. In pursuit of transparency and accountability we are committed to achieving the following goals in 2022:

  • Providing resources which encourage CSWCD staff and board members to participate in racial equity trainings offered through Third Space Action Lab. This will help establish a shared awareness and understanding of the disparities that exist throughout our country, especially among Black residents and other people of color.

  • Convening CSWCD’s DEI Committee and other partners to create a 2023 Roadmap of Action for the District. This Roadmap will help outline specific actions CSWCD will take throughout 2023 to continue learning, growing, and making impact in our community. Examples of actions that may be found in the roadmap include:

  • Building relationships with community partners to create new connections with residents, businesses, and organizations with which the District historically has not engaged.
  • Evaluating the District’s recruiting & hiring practices to ensure more inclusivity and creating employment opportunities for people of color.
  • Translating select outreach and education materials into Spanish and other languages spoken throughout the District.
  • Evaluating CSWCD’s programming and identifying ways to improve inclusivity and accessibility throughout the County.
  • Establishing metrics and tracking tools to analyze the effectiveness of DEI efforts.

If you have questions, would like to learn more, or would like to provide feedback, please reach out to the District via our contact form.

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