Equity & Social Justice
The Everett Station District Alliance convened a "Committee to Create a Just and Equitable Community" as part of the Convergence Study during 2020-2021, which established the following equity statements and principles. The ESDA has adopted these statements as its own.
We acknowledge that our conversations reside over occupied Coast Salish land, particularly the Stillaguamish, Tulalip, and affiliated tribes and peoples. We acknowledge and respect tribal sovereignty, recognizing the time-honored relationship between tribal and indigenous people to their traditional lands. We decry the forced removal and displacement of tribal communities and their families from their ancestral lands by colonizers. We seek to learn more about the history of these traditional lands, where tribal and indigenous people sustain their relationship to the land, indigenous languages, and ceremonies. We are committed to listening, learning, and lifting indigenous voices. We honor the Stillaguamish, Tulalip, and affiliated tribes and peoples for their strength in preserving their native language and their resiliency in enduring past hardships while educating non-tribal communities in ways of reconciliation toward peace.
Statement on Racial Injustice
We take a stand against the institutional, interpersonal, and structural racism that afflicts our country. America’s history of racial injustice began with the occupation and theft of native lands and successive efforts to eliminate native culture and ways of life, and the enslavement and continued chattel slavery of indigenous people, African Americans, and others. The injustices continued with the expulsion of Chinese immigrants and the internment of Japanese Americans, the deportation of Hispanic Americans, intimidation and violence, targeted law enforcement practices against people of color, voter disenfranchisement, Islamophobia and religious intolerance, ethnic and racial covenants, redlining, restrictive zoning, segregation in affordable housing, predatory lending, neighborhood clearances for highway expansion to suburbs, and underinvestment in affordable public transportation. These injustices and many others, in concert over many generations, led to historic traumas and extreme health, wealth, and social hierarchy inequities between White and Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color communities. Equity and inclusion are at the forefront of our principles to counter the racist acts and impacts of the past and to build a just and equitable community now and in the future.
Our efforts aim to transform ideas of equity in community planning, policy development, and resource allocation. The compounding effects of historic social injustices are challenges we must address together, particularly with those facing poverty, communities of colors, and all other historically marginalized populations. As an allied community, we can begin to create generational power and wealth — a future where everyone’s contribution matters and people can take ownership of what they make.
Center Community: Actively engage the local community in decision-making, planning, and policy-making to ensure those who have been historically marginalized, including people with disabilities, indigenous populations, and communities of color, etc. are central to decision-making
Design for All: Following principles of Universal Design, design engagement processes and the built environment for people of all ages, abilities, and languages so that they may fully participate in the community and safely and easily access jobs, shopping, and services.
Create Housing Abundance and Affordability: Proactively build enough housing for people of all incomes to meet the region’s and City’s needs, with prioritization of building housing near light rail. Prevent discrimination in housing opportunities, especially for people of color, immigrants, and households with low income. Provide a range of unit sizes and of rental and ownership opportunities and to support families and generational wealth creation.
Provide Affordable and Convenient Transportation Options: Ensure all households have access to conveniently and safely walk, bike, and ride transit from their homes to destinations of work, school, shops, and other services.
Support a Just and Equitable Economy: Support the building of generational wealth for those who have been the most economically disadvantaged by providing career pathways through education and training, supporting existing and incubating new minority-owned businesses, and supporting new community-based business models.
Cultivate Safe and Healthy Environments: Create or renovate accessible open spaces and recreational facilities, such as schools, parks, healthcare, libraries, and fresh food opportunities, to promote community health.
Promote Environmental Justice: Address environmental health disparities for underserved communities by creating sustainable development and attaining resources to alleviate environmental health risks.
Preserve, Sustain, and Utilize Local Assets: Support arts and cultural programs to address the needs of diverse populations that can strengthen and preserve existing cultural landscapes. Acknowledging indigenous voices and recognizing the history of this land and how it ties into the lives of the people past and present are crucial in doing so.
This document was established as part of the 2021 Convergence Study, and were incorporated into the final report that was formally approved and supported by the ESDA Board of Directors.