Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) condemns the racial injustices inflicted on people of color in our country. We denounce police violence and the senseless loss of life it has caused. We grieve for the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery. These most recent deaths reflect a human rights crisis rooted in our country’s legacy of structural racism – a system that unfairly rewards some and harms others on the basis of skin color.
We are anti-racist and seek to be part of a changing culture.
We will use our voices in the effort to reject racism, and as an organization, we will strive for equity to contribute to much-needed, broad-scale systems change.
As a statewide funding organization in the privileged position of investing millions of public dollars each year, we support and will continue to support organizations and individuals that make Colorado’s outdoor spaces more accessible, safe, and welcoming for people who have historically been prevented from enjoying the outdoors and its benefits.
We will address issues of disparity and disproportionality, because the benefits of conservation and recreation on peoples’ lives are deep and multi-faceted. Black people, Indigenous people, and all people of color should have access to quality, life-enhancing outdoor spaces and experiences.
We call on the conservation and recreation community to join us in the critical work of creating a racially equitable outdoor movement. And we are grateful for our many partners already actively elevating diverse perspectives, including those from people of different races and ethnicities, in their progressive, community-driven work. You work to break down racial inequities every day. We are listening. We are learning. We support you.
We are committed to the movement and to advancing equity for the long term.
GOCO will be a workplace that is inclusive and equitable. To foster ongoing learning, we will provide access to resources and opportunities that enrich equity education for our staff and board members.
We will not stop listening and learning, and we will keep striving for equity.
Chris Castilian Hollie Velasquez Horvath
Executive Director Board Chair