The New England Aquarium stands with Black Lives Matter against systemic racism and discrimination, and vows to take concrete steps towards a more equitable world. We will use our platform to dismantle structural racism and white privilege at our institution, in our community, and in our work to achieve a vital and vibrant ocean for all. To do so, we must first change from within.

We recognize that, as individuals and as an institution, we have much work to do. We must review internal policies and practices and create learning opportunities to accelerate our understanding of systemic racism. We also acknowledge that there is power in diverse voices. We need to better reflect and lift all voices within our community and work in partnership with those affected by racism.

As we reaffirm diversity, equity, and inclusion as a strategic priority of our organization, we commit to creating a cross-functional and diverse working group that will strengthen current and develop new and actionable plans in the next 30 days to advance the following goals:

1. Create an institutional culture of inclusion and equity, and diversify our leadership, staff, and governance.

2. Make the Aquarium and the downtown waterfront welcoming, inclusive, and accessible spaces for all visitors and members of our community.

3. Expand access and create new educational opportunities for science learning for communities facing racial, social, and other inequities.

4. Build a pipeline to diversify the field of marine biology.

5. Amplify the voices of those working in environmental justice and advocacy.

6. Listen to, collaborate with, and advocate for those disproportionately affected by climate change.

7. Support marine conservation leaders in developing countries.

Even as we pledge immediate action, we recognize that real change takes time.

Just as protecting the blue planet requires your support, assistance, and action, so does the challenge facing us today. We hope you will join us in this work.

Vikki N. Spruill
President and CEO,
New England Aquarium