A landmark coalition of diverse leaders from civil rights, environmental justice, conservation and community organizations, including Glenn Nelson, founder of The Trail Posse, today announced a set of recommended policies and called on President Obama to take critical steps toward an inclusive system of national parks and other public lands that reflects, honors and engages all Americans.

For a vision statement from the group, plus a full list of signatories, click here.

“Let’s make sure we increase access to public spaces,” said Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.), the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus chairperson, said at a press conference in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Carolyn Finney, associated professor at Kentucky who wrote, Black Faces, White Places, said, “It’s a moment for us to grab this.”

“This” is an effort you can help by signing an online petition urging President Obama to issue an Executive Order to ensure the second century of conservation in America reflects the full diversity of our nation’s citizens; respects the historical, cultural and spiritual stories and unique contributions of all Americans; and actively engages all people.

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), the ranking member of the House Natural Resources Committee; Maite Arce, Hispanic Access Foundation, and Mark Masaoka, Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council, also spoke at today’s press conference.

In addition to urging Obama to make a statement about diversity and inclusion in public lands on the National Park Service Centenntial, Aug., 25, the coalition issued recommended policies and reforms in five different areas:

  • Access to public lands.
  • Historical, spiritual, sacred and cultural preservation.
  • Landscape-scale conservation.
  • Stakeholder engagement.
  • Workforce diversity.