• Organizational
  • Racial & Environmental Justice

Washington Conservation Action releases its 2014-2024 Racial Equity Report, a review of ten years of racial equity work

Dear friends and colleagues,

At Washington Conservation Action, we believe in a culture of learning and growing. In our journey, we’ve come to understand that racism is inextricably linked to climate change: The industries and systems that are damaging both the planet and people profit by shunting pollution and its problems onto those least responsible, and those least able to respond. Greenhouse gas pollution disproportionately harms communities of color, Tribal nations and rural communities.

Ten years ago, few organizations were doing the important work of addressing environmental racism. We started that work slowly and gradually. We made mistakes. We moved forward, only to move back and then forward again. We continue to lean in, to learn, and to grow.  

As our commitment to anti-racism strengthened, we realized that fighting inequality is not only the best way forward in our work, but the only way. Because of our anti-racism work, we developed new partnerships, new ways of thinking and working. Eventually, this approach resulted in better progress. For instance, the relationships we fostered in this work made possible the broad coalition that passed the Climate Commitment Act, our state’s polluter-pay law, the nation’s strongest.

That’s why, I am humbled to share Washington Conservation Action’s Racial Equity Report, chronicling our journey since 2014 and our progress to advance racial equity and environmental justice within our organization and in the broader environmental movement.

Thanks to our former CEO Joan Crooks, previous board members, and the countless staff who pushed us to stretch and grow. I would also like to thank our organizational partners across Washington who have encouraged this work and kept us accountable to our ideals. 

Further, I appreciate our members, donors, supporters, and activists for their trust, their willingness to learn and grow with us, and their collaboration over the course of this work.

On behalf of the entire WCA leadership team, we will continue to prioritize transparency in what we’re doing and a commitment to racial equity and environmental justice. We are building our next racial equity plan and are utilizing the last ten years of work to inform us.

Looking ahead, we remain dedicated to our core values, fostering a culture of learning and growth, and delivering lasting, equitable progress for our communities and the environment. We are excited about the opportunities ahead and are confident that the work we’ve done over the course of the last decade will help us navigate the evolving landscape of racial equity, anti-racism, and environmental justice.

Tomorrow, as a continuation of this work, we’re joining national organizations and Green 2.0 to announce being a part of the Pay Equity Pledge, which is a campaign to increase pay equity for people of color—particularly women of color— in environmental organizations.

I invite you to delve into the pages of the racial equity report to discover the milestones, achievements, the challenges, and progress we’ve made—and the work that still remains. Read the report here.

In humble gratitude,
Alyssa Macy (she/her)
CEO, Washington Conservation Action
Citizen, Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Oregon