The mission of the Museum of Us is to be a transformative space that inspires human connection while exploring the human experience.
We accomplish our mission by sharing narratives beyond the dominant discourse, narratives that challenge assumptions and encourage people to think in new and different ways. Our goal is to foster opportunities for us all to learn from each other, reflect on our place in an intersectional world, and collaborate on how we can collectively build a more just society. We are dedicated to finding ways to promote social justice and freedom from oppression at the Museum of Us, in our industry, our society, and throughout the world.
Truth-telling and Accountability:
The Museum of Us recognizes that existing systems of power give inequitable privileges and access to different people, which can vary greatly, depending on how they are positioned within any given context. These systems embody (but are not limited to) white supremacy, colonialism, systemic racism, ableism, sexism, heterosexism, classism, and socio‐economic segregation, privilege, and power. We acknowledge that throughout our history the Museum of Us has perpetuated these systems of power – both intentionally and unintentionally.
Accountability through Action:
These issues cannot, and should not, be addressed simply through talk or analysis but by action. Our team members and board of trustees are deeply committed to making the organizational changes necessary to achieve a more equitable and just organization. We believe that doing so allows us to more authentically work with others toward a more equitable and just industry, society, and world. We are committed to finding ways to integrate diversity, equity, access, and inclusion (DEAI) into, and throughout, the organizational fabric of the Museum of Us. We seek to thoughtfully challenge and dismantle systemic oppression, especially within our own practices.
Action is essential to our relevance, credibility, and ability to effectively inspire transformative human connection. With this in mind, we strive to expand equity, inclusion and belonging at the Museum of Us. The following are several (but not the only) actions we are committed to in furthering this work:
- Getting input from and listening to our team members, board of trustees, and the community we serve, about the ways in which we are falling short. We see this as the first step toward doing better.
- Seeking out, acknowledging, and meaningfully addressing inequities within our policies, systems, programs, culture, and services. For example, we will regularly audit and provide correctives to our HR policies to make them more equitable for all team members.
- Committing time and resources to developing a more accessible museum, internally and externally, for peoples with all types of disabilities and needs for access, accommodation, and engagement.
- Developing DEAI action plans and regular evaluations, process and impact data tracking.
- Reporting our progress in transparent ways to our team members, board of trustees, and the community we serve.
- Committing time and resources to developing more diverse leadership within our team, our board of trustees, and our advisory bodies, including, but not limited to, for training and professional development opportunities.
- Fostering democratic collaboration through organizational working groups, community consultations, and other equity‐based partnerships.
- Promoting, uplifting, and honoring the realities and voices of Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC), LGBTQIA+, QTIPOC, and gender non‐binary peoples in our programs, exhibits, education, cultural resources stewardship, investment policy, and external and internal communications.
- Promoting equity, anti‐racism, anti‐colonialism and decolonization through our programs, exhibitions, education, cultural resources stewardship, investment policies, external and internal communications, and through organizational policies that promote sustainable change.
Our Place and Our Word:
We recognize that this work is a marathon, not a sprint. It is essential we act with transparency. We approach our ongoing work with optimism, courage, humility, and transparency around our past, present, and future. We know we will make mistakes along the way, but we make the promise to learn, be accountable, take action, and adapt as we grow.
Approved by the Museum of Us Board of Trustees in November of 2020
Download a PDF of this statement here: DEAI Statement – Museum of Us – November 2020