PINA’s Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Permaculture Institute of North America (PINA) will challenge and work to dismantle systemic oppression in order to implement permaculture ethics across society. Our historic commitment to ethics of earthcare, people care, and fair share/future care through self-regulation also recognizes that diversity in design—which is the core of our work—builds stability and increases yields. Diverse people offer a rich inventory of life experiences, traditions, and perspectives that can only strengthen organizations. Our Board and staff promote diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) both within and beyond PINA to advance our mission. We seek to increase public awareness of the value of permaculture design by addressing major social and environmental challenges, identifying critical arenas for work, and applying design insights and experienced permaculture talent to solve complex problems at scale.

Environmental burdens and benefits are not distributed equitably, and we acknowledge that black, brown and indigenous communities disproportionately suffer from environmental injustice and limited access to resources for direct assistance and for the self-help to which all persons and communities have a right. This is especially evident in opportunities to lead and participate in holistic design systems. Good social design requires that we invite and empower all persons to work for the benefit of life. PINA is particularly concerned to increase DEI in relation to land tenure for regeneration, community empowerment, and permaculture education. Consequently, we prioritize anti-racism in our commitment to address these disproportionate historic and current disparities.

We strive to practice the Jemez Principles and Principles of Environmental Justice in our work, and know we are better suited to do so when we practice these principles internally.

To make PINA a thriving and equitable organization for our staff, board, and volunteers, we seek to build a culture of transparency, trust, mutual support, and accountability to principles of equity and inclusion. Some concrete examples of how we are implementing this include:

  • Emphasizing diversity, equity, and inclusion in recruitment for partners, participants, and beneficiaries of our existing and proposed projects such as Fire Ecology Restoration Project, Perennial Corps, and Urban Youth Permaculture Education.
  • Hiring staff and recruiting new Board Members who represent the broad spectrum of people in North America.
  • Learning new practices that promote these values in our day-to-day work and how we interact with one another.
  • Fostering knowledge of these issues, and affirming an organization-wide commitment to action.

We accept that our commitment to DEI means a dedication to constant learning—we will make mistakes, but we are determined to accept feedback and to improve our self-regulation. We will review our actions and practices related to all of these policies and will report to our staff, board, and community to hold ourselves accountable to our DEI goals.