Wistariahurst Museum stands with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities and is committed to racial equity. Racial equity is defined as bringing about clear, simple, direct remedies for historical and present-day structural and policy barriers producing racial disparities and disparate impacts. It is not merely a value; equity is a systemic shift. Race equity is actualized fairness and justice; and is the condition that would be achieved if one’s racial identity no longer predicted, in a statistical sense, how one fares.
We Commit To:
Collaborative Inclusive Programming.
This means that we will welcome and seek out programming that highlights the arts, history, and culture of BIPOC communities. We will continue building relationships and collaborations with BIPOC organizations and individuals. We will approach these collaborations with the goal of supporting and amplifying the work of these organizations and individuals.
We started our anti-racist training in November of 2022 for all volunteers, staff, and board members. This training is shared with all new staff, volunteers, and board members as they are onboarded. We will continue this education and treat it as an ongoing learning process.
Transparency in our Collections and Permanent Programming.
Wistariahurst’s collections will continue working to add more stories that reflect the BIPOC histories of Holyoke. It will focus more on the histories of those who live(d) and work(ed) in Holyoke and the greater Connecticut River Valley. Our collections process includes an advisory committee made up of community members.
Creating a Space that is Safe and Equitable.
Wistariahurst provides literature in both English and Spanish. We will continue expanding our dual-language offerings. More than 80% of our offerings are free and open to the public and outside of fundraising tours and events, we offer free options for low-income families and participate in the Card to Culture program as well as offer museum passes to any local library that inquires. We utilize anti-racist guidelines for prospective employees by standardizing our questions, looking holistically at a person’s experience, and not penalizing gaps in employment.
Wistariahurst understands that many complex issues may not have simple answers but we will always lead with empathy and kindness at the core of all we do. Historically, our museum has fallen short and in the last decade, we have started moving forward, learning from our past mistakes to serve all of Holyoke and all who visit this institution. We will continue learning and bettering this institution, ensuring BIPOC visitors feel welcomed and represented in what we do.