The Xerces Society is committed to establishing and maintaining a diverse and inclusive community that collectively supports our mission: to protect the natural world by conserving invertebrates and their habitat. We recognize that climate change, biodiversity loss, contamination of water, soil, and air with pesticides and other toxics and many other environmental challenges have disproportionate negative impacts on communities of color and economically disadvantaged communities.
Invertebrate diversity is vital to sustain life on this planet. Having invertebrates to pollinate nutritious food, process plant and animal waste, help clean our rivers and feed the myriad animals on the planet will help us all. The benefits of conserving invertebrates truly help everyone—no matter their gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, education, or disability. The inverse is also true—to maximize invertebrate conservation, all of society needs to have a role. The conservation of invertebrates will take an all-hands-on-deck approach and it is vital that diverse communities benefit from this conservation and engage to help protect these vital animals.
The Xerces Society embraces diversity in staffing and in our program services. At the Xerces Society a diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplace is one where all employees and volunteers, regardless of their gender identity, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, age, sexual orientation, education or disability, feel valued and respected. We are committed to a nondiscriminatory approach and provide equal opportunity for employment and advancement. We respect and value diverse life experiences and heritages, and work to ensure that all voices are valued and heard. The Xerces Society will strive to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in our conservation and education programs.
As part of building a diverse and inclusive community in both our organization and conservation and education programs, the Xerces Society strives to:
- Ensure that all staff members feel that they are critical members of the Xerces Society community.
- Support diversity, inclusion, and equity as connected to our mission and to ensure the well-being of our staff and the communities we serve.
- Acknowledge and dismantle any inequities within our policies, systems, programs, and services.
- Step back to listen to all voices.
- Engage and include as broad a constituency as possible.
- Always collaborate with fairness and respect.
- Identify potential underlying, unquestioned biases that interfere with inclusiveness.
- Assess how past and present systemic inequities might affect Xerces' work, and how best to address these inequities in a way that is consistent with our mission.
- Hold ourselves accountable for the ways that our actions both actively and passively reinforce inequities.
The Xerces Society is moving forward with the following action plans to help promote diversity and inclusion in our workplace and in our program services:
- Attracting, hiring, and retaining a diverse and multi-culturally sensitive staff and board.
- Improving employee satisfaction and engagement by building a work culture of trust, support, cultural sensitivity, respect, and inclusion.
- Applying an equity lens in planning and implementation of conservation initiatives.
- Connecting with and building a diverse base of supporters and funders who will help us to achieve our mission.
- Furthering the mission of Xerces by reaching, educating, and engaging a broad range of communities where the outcome is mutually beneficial for the conservation of invertebrates and the relationships built within those communities.