Equity Blog

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Fighting Racism In The Outdoors

All people should have equal opportunities and access to engage with nature. Our members, and the greater community at large, should be free to enjoy the outdoors without fear. They should be able to go birding (#ChristianCooper), go for a jog (#AhmaudArbery), walk to the store (#MikeBrown), walk with their family (#CliffordGlover), breathe (#EricGarner, #GeorgeFloyd), and live (#FreddieGray, #BreonnaTaylor) without being targeted for the color of their skin. Black lives matter, and we are committed to continuing to fight for equality. Read more…

3 Simple Steps to Get Started on Your Equity & Inclusion Journey

About a year and a half ago, The Mountaineers announced our intentions to formally engage in equity and inclusion (E&I) work. Guided by our Board of Directors, this commitment stems from our belief that a diverse and inclusive outdoors inspires unity, respect, and passion for the places we love. Studies also show that groups with better diversity make better decisions. In an organization where safety is so highly valued, investing in E&I will only make us stronger and more resilient. We’re grateful to all of you who have participated in making our community one where all people feel safe and respected. Read more…

My Profile: Pronouns & Optional Demographics

We believe a diverse and inclusive outdoors inspires unity, respect, and passion for the places we love, and that's why we seek to provide opportunities for all. As a reflection of our Core Values and the strategic priorities of Vision 2022, we’ve invested in internal equity to be sure everyone feels a place of belonging in The Mountaineers. Recently, we invested in improvements to the My Profile page for you to share your pronouns and demographic information. Read more…

Where are you REALLY from?

The scene is one familiar to every Mountaineer: a full car on a long drive back from a successful outing. The conversation is flowing and everyone is at ease after having shared an inspiring time out in the wilderness. Then, inevitably, a fellow climber asks me the question: “Where are you from?” Read more…

Join Us at the 2019 Refuge Outdoor Festival

Refuge Outdoor Festival is a 3-day camping experience geared toward people of color. Introduced in 2018, Refuge is "centered on building community through outdoor recreation, conversations (community talks, workshops), music, and art that appeal to a diverse and inclusive audience." The Mountaineers signed on as a sponsor of Refuge because we know affinity spaces are important places to build connections with each other and the outdoors, and we'd like to invite you to participate in this year's festival on behalf of The Mountaineers. Read more…

Equity & Inclusion Working Sessions: Key Learnings

At The Mountaineers, we believe a diverse and inclusive outdoors inspires unity, respect, and passion for the places we love. We aspire to offer outdoor opportunities for ALL, and held two listening sessions in July 2019 to hear your feedback about how we should work to confront our internal systems of inequity. Thank you to everyone who participated in these sessions. Read more…

Equity & Inclusion Working Sessions - July 9 & 15

At The Mountaineers, we believe a diverse and inclusive outdoors inspires unity, respect, and passion for the places we love. We aspire to offer outdoor opportunities for ALL, and are seeking your feedback to confront our internal systems of inequity. Please join us for a July working session to share your thoughts and help be part of the solution. Read more…

Equity & Inclusion Update: Committee Charter, Working Group Sessions, & Resources

At The Mountaineers, we believe a diverse and inclusive outdoors inspires unity, respect, and passion for the places we love. We aspire to offer outdoor opportunities for ALL, and have assembled a board-chartered Equity & Inclusion (E&I) Committee to direct our strategy, priorities, and resourcing to make progress on this goal. We have recently completed our committee charter, and are planning our next town hall style listening session to gather your feedback and share some of the results of our committee work. Read more…

Plus Size Climbing Harnesses: Resources & Measurements

Climbing can be an intimidating sport. For plus size people it’s even more so. Worrying about whether or not a harness will fit your body is a huge barrier to so many. Many of you have told me that you’re scared or have felt uncomfortable trying a new sport when you’re surrounded by other straight sized folks. I really want to break down those barriers and offer a more comfortable space to learn in. Don’t worry, I’ll show you the ropes (pun intended)! Read more…

Language Matters: Let's Stop Using the Slang Word For Carabiner

Many people use an abbreviated slang word in climbing without consideration or afterthought. This word is frequently used alongside other words like rope, harness, and belay. If you search on the Internet for this word, the first 5-10 results would reference the term to describe a piece of standard climbing gear. Countless climbing websites recognize the slang word as a standard, and our basic climbing students are even indoctrinated with its common use. And all of us are wrong. Read more…