Rivers Are For All

Friday, June 5th, 2020

The Vermont River Conservancy remains committed to our goal of public access to our rivers for all to enjoy. We believe that river access offers a connection with the natural world, a connection that transcends socioeconomic status, physical abilities, and race.

Simply put, VRC believes rivers are open to ALL.

In order to fully embrace and live our mission, VRC will oppose the systemic racism that is prevalent throughout our state, region and country. We humbly acknowledge that we have work to do to ensure we are not preventing our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community members full access to the beauty and peace our river spaces provide.

James Lyall, Executive Director of ACLU of Vermont wrote these words: “Vermonters may feel a world away from Minneapolis and the sites of so many uprisings, but we are not. Every metric we have shows that Black Vermonters face systemic barriers to education, health care, employment, and justice.”

Vermont River Conservancy will not let these barriers stop our BIPOC friends from enjoying all that our rivers have to offer. We acknowledge that words are not enough, and we commit our organization to consider equity and inclusion with each new project we take on, to being more deliberate in reaching out for other perspectives and thinking beyond our own experiences, and to being anti-racist in all aspects of our work.

North Branch Cascades, photo credit: Wayne Fawbush

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