This page contains resources related to diversity, equity, inclusion, racial justice, and creating safe spaces in our organizations and communities for people of all backgrounds to feel welcome.

Racial Justice

Privilege/White Culture/White Privilege/Power

Injustice, Privilege, & Inequity in Sustainability, Environmentalism, Conservation Movement

Environmental Justice/Climate Justice

Social Justice/Human Rights/Nonviolence

Food Justice/Food Security

Fostering Inclusion, Empathy/Fighting Hate




Racial Justice

  • Dismantling Racism: A Resource Book for Social Change Groups from The Western States Center. Description: "This resource book is a compilation of materials designed to supplement a Dismantling Racism workshop. This resource book is never complete. The pages you see here change regularly based on the feedback and critical thinking or workshop participants and others who use them. The contents include: The Context of Dismantling Racism Work; Developing Shared Language and Analysis; From Internalized Racist Oppression to Empowerment; From Internalized White Supremacy to Anti-Racist White Ally; Anti-Racist Organizational Development; Moving Racial Justice Organizing."
  • Opportunities for White People in the Fight for Racial Justice Jonathan Osler describes this resource: "The ideas captured on this website, very much a work in progress, have been developed to support White people to act for racial justice. It draws from ideas and resources developed mostly by Black, Brown and People of Color, and has been edited by Black, Brown, and People of Color. I recognize that categorizing actions under the labels of Actor, Ally, and Accomplice is an oversimplification, but hopefully this chart challenges all of us White folks to go outside of our comfort zones, take some bigger risks, and make some more significant sacrifices because this is what we’ve been asked to do by those most impacted by racism, colonialism, patriarchy, white supremacy, xenophobia, and hyper-capitalism. I believe that for real change to occur, we must confront and challenge all people, policies, systems, etc., that maintain privileges and power for White people."
  • Curriculum for White Americans to Educate Themselves on Race and Racism–from Ferguson to Charleston by Jon Greenberg. Excerpt: "There are no doubt complexities that come with White Americans working for racial justice. White privilege can lead to a chronic case of undiagnosed entitlement, creating poor listeners, impatient speakers who talk over others, and people unaccustomed to taking orders. Nevertheless, the movement for racial justice needs more White Americans to get involved. And it’s our responsibility to help each other get involved–and get involved productively. I compiled this list to help White Americans do so. One positive to emerge from these difficult times is the wealth of resources now available for White Americans. Never have I seen so many ideas, options, and concrete steps to take action against racism. And we are making progress: Looks Like White Americans Are Finally Starting to Come Around on Race and Policing. A few police officers are even being held accountable–finally–for their devastating decisions. But so much work remains."
  • Standing Up for Racial Justice. "SURJ is a national network of groups and individuals organizing White people for racial justice. Through community organizing, mobilizing, and education, SURJ moves White people to act as part of a multi-racial majority for justice with passion and accountability. We work to connect people across the country while supporting and collaborating with local and national racial justice organizing efforts. SURJ provides a space to build relationships, skills and political analysis to act for change." Visit the Santa Cruz Chapter SURJ Facebook page for local meetings and opportunities.
  • White People Showing Up for Racial Justice: Striving to Be More Thoughtful, Reflexive, and Active by Santa Cruz Chapter - Showing Up for Racial Justice (Link to file download below this paragraph). Excerpt: "Think of this resource not as a checklist, but a kind of guided reflection tool for checking your privilege, taking responsibility for your education, being responsive and responsible in the fight to dismantle white supremacy, and building your capacity to show up for racial justice. These questions are framed for individual reflection, but ‘I’ can be replaced with ‘we’ when using these questions in your organizations or collective practice. Once you read through the questions, return to them again and again and seek supplementary resources, because this work will not be done in our lifetimes. Keep working to build a different future."

Privilege/White Culture/White Privilege/Power

  • "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack" by Peggy McIntosh. Excerpt: "I have come to see white privilege as an invisible package of unearned assets that I can count on cashing in each day, but about which I was “meant” to remain oblivious. White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, codebooks, visas, clothes, tools and blank checks."
  • "White Supremacy Culture" by Tema Okun of Dismantling Racism Works. Excerpt: "This is a list of characteristics of white supremacy culture that show up in our organizations. Culture is powerful precisely because it is so present and at the same time so very difficult to name or identify. The characteristics listed below are damaging because they are used as norms and standards without being proactively named or chosen by the group. They are damaging because they promote white supremacy thinking. Because we all live in a white supremacy culture, these characteristics show up in the attitudes and behaviors of all of us – people of color and white people. Therefore, these attitudes and behaviors can show up in any group or organization, whether it is white-led or predominantly white or people of color-led or predominantly people of color."
  • "The Sugarcoated Language Of White Fragility" by Anna Kegler on The Huffington Post Blog. Excerpt: "The language we use to talk about racism is obviously distorted, a big clue that something is being hidden. It’s pretty easy to pinpoint the source: most White people can’t handle talking about racism. We flail. We don’t understand the subject, we get really uncomfortable, and we either clam up because we don’t want to say the wrong thing, or we bust out the whitesplaining (FYI, this is a best-case scenario. It can be much worse). To mitigate our shortcomings, we surround ourselves with comforting words. Words that feel neutral. Words that don’t point fingers (at us). Words that center Whiteness, while erasing the harshness of discrimination and segregation. We reject words that we feel are too direct, that might reveal complicity on our part."
  • "Four Stages of White Identity Formation: A Model" from UUA / Intro to White Ethnic Identity for Youth – Video & Discussion Guide. Excerpt: "This model can be a valuable tool to help people who identify as white to better understand their identity formation. A limitation of such a model is that human beings are all different, and each of us is constantly evolving and changing. Keep in mind that these stages are meant as guidelines; they are not stagnant, but fluid: A person can remain at one stage or move between stages during their lifetime. Take care neither to use this model to label or stereotype individuals nor to generalize about people who identify as white."
  • UC Santa Cruz Diversity and Inclusion Certificate Program Historical Overview: Power, Privilege and Oppression Resource List (below).

Injustice, Privilege, & Inequity in Sustainability, Environmentalism, Conservation Movement

  • "Whiteness and Sustainability: Reflecting on Race, Class, and Green Living" by Gregory Mengel, Ph.D on Cosmology of Whiteness blog. Excerpt: "In the spirit of this examination and with apologies to Peggy McIntosh, I have assembled a partial and provisional list of specific race and class privilege that seem to be taken for granted in the culture of white middleclass environmentalism or sustainability."
  • Urban Adonia blog by Dr. Adonia Lugo contains many critical reflections on transportation, bicycling, our use of public space, and more. Excerpt: "As an ethnographer, I use bicycling, walking, and riding transit as embodied methods for observing the racialized and classed power dynamics of urban space. Through my research I've found that there are many people who view driving a car as a passport to a better life. As an activist, I'm interested in finding ways to move toward sustainable transportation in conversation with them, rather than viewing them as barriers or expecting them to change according to my own preferences. As an educator, I ask my students to develop an awareness of their own perspectives because in order to further sustainability in our democracy, we must cultivate cross-cultural understanding and respect for diverse realities. We don't all experience streets the same way and yet because of historic inequities privileged groups get to have more input around what happens to our public spaces. I see shifting transportation culture not as a design project but as a vehicle for social justice and equitable participation in public decisionmaking. My approach draws on the tradition of flânerie and the Situationist International's call for political action in public space, blended with feminist critical theory's situated knowledge. Much of my own perspective developed through my confusing experiences growing up as an English-speaking, mixed, Mexican-American kid in the immigrant enclave of a suburban California town where racism still shapes residential patterns. Having always felt in-between myself, I was drawn to study the conflicting, complex ways that people inhabit cities and streets."
  • "Conservation Refugees" by Mark Dowie, from Orion Magazine. Excerpt: "It’s no secret that millions of native peoples around the world have been pushed off their land to make room for big oil, big metal, big timber, and big agriculture. But few people realize that the same thing has happened for a much nobler cause: land and wildlife conservation. Today the list of culture-wrecking institutions put forth by tribal leaders on almost every continent includes not only Shell, Texaco, Freeport, and Bechtel, but also more surprising names like Conservation International (CI), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). Even the more culturally sensitive World Conservation Union (IUCN) might get a mention."
  • "When Accessibility gets Labeled Wasteful" by crippledscholar blog. This thought-provoking blog post provides an example of how ableism of environmental advocates can lead folks with disabilities to feel alienated or have their needs ignored and disregarded in the name of sustainability. Certainly, we can find solutions that balance accessibility and equity with the least environmental impact; this article provides a perspective that able-bodied people may never have considered before.
  • Decolonizing sustainability: Unsettling the dominant paradigm from Portland State University. Excerpt: "While the environmental movement rightly takes a stand in representing the viability of Earth’s life support systems, SSM re-focuses our lens to think about how social and environmental issues are connected. All humans depend on biological systems for basic survival, from air and food, to water and shelter. While learning about the patterns of colonization, expansion, and imperialism, it is clear that the extraction of resources often goes hand in hand with the subjugation of peoples in the names of greed, power, and consumption. Sometimes I wonder if sustainability and diversity advocates are addressing similar issues from different viewpoints."
  • Critical Sustainabilities at UC Santa Cruz. Description: "From activism to ecology, popular culture to industry, sustainability, it seems, is everywhere. In the face of economic and environmental crisis, and unprecedented rates of urbanization, the term has become ubiquitous in policy circles and across myriad social domains. This reveals a deeply felt and widely shared desire for a sustainable future. At the same time, it presents us with competing and often contradictory meanings and applications of the term that pose challenges for sustainability scholarship, organizing, and practice. This site offers tools—in the form of keywords, sites, and projects—that can help us make sense of the multiple sustainabilities circulating today, and engage with the concept in more critical, creative, and powerful ways."

Environmental Justice/Climate Justice

  • Environmental Justice and Environmentalism: The Social Justice Challenge to the Environmental Movement edited by Ronald Sandler and Phaedra C. Pezzullo. Excerpt: "The environmental and environmental justice movements would seem to be natural allies. Indeed, one might expect that a social movement dedicated to environmental integrity and preservation and a social movement dedicated to justice in the distribution of environmental goods and decision making would not be two distinct social movements, but rather two aspects of one encompassing movement. After all, both have chosen the core term of “environment” to name their passions, mobilize their constituents, and send their message to those they aim to persuade. Moreover, there are ample opportunities for joint efforts in the cause for environmental health, sustainability, and integrity. All of our environments—from urban to wilderness areas— are being stressed, polluted, and commodified, while corporations and governmental agencies increasingly are challenging the general public and local communities for control over them. So it would seem reasonable that the movements would be, at minimum, coalition partners in a broad array of social and political struggles. Therefore, it is somewhat unexpected that the relationship between the environmental movement and the environmental justice movement in the United States often has been characterized as one of division and even hostility, rather than one of cooperation" (1-2).
  • This Changes Everything by Naomi Klein. Description: "Forget everything you think you know about global warming. The really inconvenient truth is that it’s not about carbon—it’s about capitalism. The convenient truth is that we can seize this existential crisis to transform our failed economic system and build something radically better. [...] Climate change, Klein argues, is a civilizational wake-up call, a powerful message delivered in the language of fires, floods, storms, and droughts. Confronting it is no longer about changing the light bulbs. It’s about changing the world—before the world changes so drastically that no one is safe. Either we leap—or we sink." This book and related film also have a lot of information related to climate justice and human rights violations related to climate change. The website also contains additional resources for taking action.

Social Justice/Human Rights/Nonviolence

  • Watsonville Brown Berets: A Chicanx/Latinx organization founded in 1994 in Watsonville modeled after the Brown Berets of the 1960s. They support farmworker rights, human rights, nonviolence, de-militarization, and other local causes for social justice. Excerpt: "We serve as a community defense force acting for the liberation and amelioration of our barrios."

Food Justice/Food Security

  • University of California Global Food Initiative : The University of California Global Food Initiative addresses one of the critical issues of our time: how to sustainably and nutritiously feed a world population expected to reach eight billion by 2025. This website contains information about the work being done throughout the UC system, including UC Santa Cruz, as well a reports, resources, and videos related to food security, sustainable farming, food access, and more.

Fostering Inclusion, Empathy/Fighting Hate

  • Ten Ways to Fight Hate: A Community Response Guide by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Description: "This guide sets out 10 principles for fighting hate, along with a collection of inspiring stories of people who worked to push hate out of their communities."
  • Event considerations for accessibility
  • "The Multiple Meanings of Equity" by Dr. Adonia Lugo on Urban Adonia. Excerpt: "I've also encountered this multiple meanings phenomenon with the term "equity." Here I'm going to discuss a few of the ways I've heard equity used in the transportation equity conversation at the national level and in bike advocacy networks. Each of these meanings represents a useful part of a larger equity strategy, but on its own has some limitations." While focused on transportation, the uses of "equity" that she examines are used in other contexts, as well.