In carrying out its mission of protecting the public’s right to clean water in the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers and their tributaries, PRKN recognizes the importance of, and is committed to, fostering Environmental Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) within its staff and Board of Directors and through its programs and external partnerships. We believe that JEDI principles promote different perspectives and new ideas, mitigate against internal biases, and ensure that PRKN has the opportunity to benefit from all available talent. We believe that incorporating JEDI considerations will maximize the effectiveness of PRKN as a whole, and will benefit the communities we serve, such that people from all backgrounds are involved in, and connected to, the process of achieving the mission, vision and goals of PRKN.
JEDI PRINCIPLES INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING:
- Environmental Justice– The right to an equitable, safe, healthy, productive, and sustainable environment for all members of a community, city, or region.
- Equity– Impartiality and fairness in the procedures, processes, and distribution of resources within and outside of an organization or group.
- Diversity– A broad demographic mix (including race, age, gender, ethnicity, cultural background, geography, etc.), within a group or organization, which reflects the makeup of the communities it serves.
- Inclusion– The degree to which diverse individuals are able to participate fully in all aspects, including the decision-making processes, of an organization or group.
JEDI PRINCIPLES APPLICABLE TO THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS: While seeking to maintain a Board with a diverse mix of critical expertise, experience, and skills (such as legal expertise, financial management skills, media savvy, and fundraising experience), PRKN will also seek a Board that is diverse in terms of background/ occupation, geography, age, gender, race and ethnicity, and that collectively reflects the diverse makeup of the watershed PRKN works to protect.
JEDI PRINCIPLES APPLICABLE TO PRKN STAFF: PRKN will strive to employ a diverse staff and create an equitable, inclusive and just workplace. Beginning with the hiring process, PRKN will hire staff members who will contribute a broad range of skills, experience, and perspectives within the organization. All staff members will be expected to recognize, value, and respect the differences in their colleagues and in the Board that brings diversity to the organization.
JEDI PRINCIPLES APPLICABLE TO PARTNERSHIPS: PRKN will build strong, long-term, egalitarian relationships with diverse communities and the organizations that represent them. PRKN will work with community leaders to understand their needs and interests. PRKN will combine its resources with others in an effort to work together on shared interests through PRKN’s watershed protection and restoration activities.
JEDI PRINCIPLES APPLICABLE TO PRKN PROGRAMS: PRKN will ensure that its work benefits all those in the watershed, including those who are most adversely affected by water pollution and those who can benefit most from access to free, clean, safe water resources in their communities.
PRKN has formed an ad hoc JEDI Committee consisting of staff, Board members, and volunteers. The JEDI Committee assists in setting and achieving measurable JEDI goals that are consistent with and support the mission of PRKN. Additionally, the JEDI Committee assists in identifying opportunities for PRKN to expand its staff, Board, volunteers, partnerships and programming to better serve diverse and underserved communities and makes recommendations concerning these opportunities to staff, other Committees, and the board. Periodically, the JEDI Committee will review this policy and assess its effectiveness in promoting diverse and representative staff, board, programs and partnerships, and report that assessment to the Board.