Our work is based on the principle that land should be treated with respect. Land conservation originated from the idea that the responsibility we feel to take care of one another can and should be extended to taking care of the land.
Here at the Orange County Land Trust, we build that land ethic into the management of our preserves and conservation easements so that life in our fields and forests will continue to thrive in the future. But the value of the life and rights of our neighbors is at the moral core of our work. Until there is just treatment of one another, there cannot be just treatment of the land.
The deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and so many violations of the human rights of Black people and other People of Color are heartbreaking. We are in solidarity with those working to end systemic inequality. We recognize that the conservation movement is not immune, and that we have a responsibility to address the causes and effects of racial injustice through our work. We are committed to providing equal and inclusive access to clean water, fresh food, and recreation in nature through land protection, and we acknowledge that we have much more work to do.