Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Diversity, equity and inclusion are an important part of our mission and vision in Snohomish County Parks. As a parks division, we strive to make communities better places to live, learn, work and play, and park and recreation agencies are in a unique position to champion efforts that advance diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). By assuring representation of diverse life experiences and voices, park and recreation professionals will better reflect the communities their agencies serve. Inequity is the ultimate challenge facing our nation, and parks and recreation can make a profound difference.
DIVERSITY, EQUITY AND INCLUSION IN SNOHOMISH COUNTY PARKS
The vision of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is: "Through the stewardship of the natural and built environments, the DCNR fosters inclusive, thriving communities across the county."
The public outreach during the 2021 Park & Recreation Visioning Process led to five thematic focus areas that were refined into guiding principles. These guiding principles form the foundation of our work for the next six years:
- Create an equitable and inclusive park system
- Preserve natural areas & open space
- Focus on improvements to existing parks
- Connect a regional trail network
- Efficiently and continuously improve our division
- Finding fund sources for working with community leaders as ambassadors to increase diversity in public outreach
- Working with the Snohomish County Office of Social Justice for a county-wide approach to access a list of pre-qualified public outreach diversity experts “community consultants”
- Incorporating translation and interpretation services into our work
- Staff education and training through the DCNR Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee and Office of Social Justice training
In 2020, parks staff started the Accessibility Taskforce to do quarterly training and park evaluations to make sure our older facilities are ADA accessible. This evaluation of existing parks involves measuring the slope of trails and pathways, height of amenities, access to restrooms, and park features for ADA accessibility. The findings are presented to maintenance and operations teams to fix identified gaps. All new parks are designed to meet ADA requirements.
SNOHOMISH COUNTY LAND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
We acknowledge the original inhabitants of this place, the Sah ku mehu (Sauk-Suiattle Tribe), the stuləgʷábš (Stillaguamish Tribe), and the sduhubš (Snohomish) Skykomish, Snoqualmie and their successors the Tulalip Tribes.
Since time immemorial, they have hunted, fished, gathered on, and taken care of these lands and waters. We respect their sovereignty, and their right to self-determination and honor their sacred spiritual connection with the land and water. We will strive to be honest about our past mistakes and bring about a future that includes their people, stories, and voices to form a more just and equitable society.
With this tribal acknowledgment, we open our time together by honoring the ancestors whose feet first knew these lands, and whose paddles still know the waters of what we now call Snohomish County.