The staff and board of the San Diego Natural History Museum will ensure that our values of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA) are apparent in our institutional policies, departmental procedures, and day-to-day practices. The current phase of our work is focused internally because we are the ones who design communications, programs, and experiences for the broader San Diego community, and our values will be embodied in these endeavors.
Every member of our Museum community is protected from discrimination and harassment by federal and state law, but that is not enough. It is important to us that every member of our community is welcomed and celebrated for our diversity of race, color, ancestry, national origin, religion, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and differing abilities. We each should feel accepted and respected for who we are and what we contribute to the Museum, without regard to our departments or titles.
Now is the time to act on our values because there are Museum staff who feel excluded, undervalued, and unheard. It is our shared responsibility to change the conditions that push anyone to the margins of our community in any way. We understand that there exists in American society historical and modern systemic barriers to full inclusion and acceptance for all people. While the nation grapples with these larger constructs in inequality, we are focusing our internal work on the realm that we have the power to change today: our museum community. Specifically, we are pursuing personal learning and interpersonal interactions before we can focus on external and systemic and institutionalized issues. For FY 2021 we commit to the following goals:
Collaborate with the Balboa Park IDEA group and participate in the Park-wide IDEA employee survey which will serve as a baseline indicator for the IDEA work that we need to do as an organization and Museum community.
Prioritize IDEA by adding a learning component as a standing agenda item on All Staff, Executive Management, Strategy Team and Board Meeting agendas.
Develop an IDEA statement with input from staff, board, volunteers and constituents. The statement will be posted in the Museum, on the website and other uses as appropriate.
Develop a land acknowledgement statement and determine guidelines for usage.
Implement policies and procedures to promote IDEA in recruitment, training, and hiring practices for staff, volunteers and board members, including casting a wider net in promoting job, program and volunteer roles to ensure equitable opportunity.
Participate in training to educate ourselves on IDEA issues and provide training opportunities for staff, board and volunteers including learning from different communities about their needs and barriers to engaging with the Museum.
Although we will deliver results on these goals during this fiscal year, our inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility efforts will continue into future years. We will revisit this commitment to action each year so that all of today’s staff and future staff can thrive as members of our community.