Image by A. Khalid
The staff and board of the Minnesota Environmental Fund are outraged and grieving the murder of George Floyd and all black and brown Americans who have lost their lives at the hands of police. These tragic losses are not anomalous events, but the result of systems of white supremacy that this nation was founded upon and have been perpetuated through present day. We stand in solidarity with those demanding justice and fighting institutionalized racism across our state.
The Minnesota Environmental Fund acknowledges our complicity in these systems and apologizes to our communities for our insufficient action to date. The environmental movement has racist histories and those foundations reverberate today. As illustrated by the experience of Christian Cooper who was recently threatened and had the police called on him by a white woman while bird watching, we as a movement have not done the necessary work to ensure the outdoors are a safe and accessible place for people of color, people with disabilities, and under-resourced people. Minnesota is no exception to this.
Our Board of Directors will be meeting this month to determine concrete steps the Minnesota Environmental Fund will take to begin to make amends and work to dismantle white supremacy in ourselves, our own organizational culture, and our work, as a funder, within Minnesota’s environmental movement.
In the meantime, we will be reading, listening, and learning from our black neighbors, sharing their messages, and supporting their work. We encourage our followers to explore this great list of resources, and to donate to The George Floyd Memorial Fund, Black Visions Collective, Reclaim the Block, and other organizations fighting for racial justice in Minnesota (links in resource list).