Community Action Duluth Inclusion & Diversity Statement
Community Action Duluth is driven by our mission statement to be an inclusive organization. We acknowledge and respond to racism and other issues of inequity in the community. We dedicate ourselves to fostering diversity and inclusion within all levels of our organization, including the board, by providing equitable opportunity to people of all races, ethnicities, religions, genders, sexual orientations, gender identifications, abilities, incomes, marital statuses, ages, geographic locations, philosophies, and veteran statuses. We create and implement programs using this same commitment to inclusion and diversity.
We recognize that race and economic status can significantly limit the opportunities of our program participants. We acknowledge the unequal impact of these factors and work to prepare program participants to overcome them while acknowledging the systemic reality of racism and economic oppression. As a result, Community Action Duluth creates and implements programs in light of our recognition of systemic racism in housing, education, asset building, income, employment, and access to high quality food. We believe that it is necessary to oppose all forms of racism, intentional and otherwise.
We demonstrate anti-racism and promote inclusion by learning from facilitated trainings, having frank discussions, embracing differences, and providing all employees, volunteers and board members with ongoing opportunities to learn, engage, confront, and be confronted. We acknowledge that positive change will not come without some discomfort, and therefore support and encourage people to express themselves without fear of reprimand.
Our commitment to anti-racism is apparent in our organizational policies, practices, procedures, and strategic plan. We create and implement programs using information and input from the communities we serve. Community members provide experiences, viewpoints, and ideas that strengthen and enrich our work.
Definition of Inclusion and Diversity: We respect, value and celebrate the unique attributes, characteristics and perspectives that make each person who they are. We believe that fostering an inclusive organization allows us to collectively and more effectively address the issues that face our communities. It is our aim, therefore, that Community Action Duluth reflect these core values.
We define diversity as the quality of being different or unique at the individual or group level. This includes age; ethnicity; gender; gender identity; language differences; nationality; parental status; physical, mental and developmental abilities; race; religion; sexual orientation; skin color; socio-economic status; work and behavioral styles; the perspectives of each individual shaped by their nation, experiences and culture—and more.
We define inclusion as a strategy to leverage diversity. Diversity always exists in social systems. Inclusion, on the other hand, must be created. In order to leverage diversity, an environment must be created where people feel supported, heard, and able to do their personal best.