Equity as Sustainability

Pursuit of Equitable Opportunity

Speaking to my art practice and artist history, my work has been predominantly focused on communicating issues and concepts surrounding environmental impact, awareness and activism, and the pursuit of sustainable ecology.

As a queer person myself, I often think about the work that consistently needs to be done towards equity among “regular” and minority members of society. I also think about how much of an impact this lack of equity has on the global populations efforts towards sustainability.

Equity is not a given enough attention 

Too often in the field of sustainability the equity piece is not given enough attention and is ignored to focus on more easily measurable environmental metrics, like gallons of water saved, emissions reduced, or tonnes of garbage diverted from the landfill. The equity piece – which I would argue is one of the most important components of sustainability – is harder for many of us to see, feel, or measure and is therefore set aside.

Recently we have seen far too many instances of hate-fuelled acts towards the LGBTQ+ community, in both the US and in Canada. All in favour of maintaining a whitewashed world that excludes any representation of “other”.

We need Diversity in Thought, Representation, Voice & Experience

But “other” is exactly what we need to work through the climate crisis. We need diversity in thought, representation, voice and experience. We need all of the voices and ideas, not just the ones that are most easily recognized.

A truly sustainable future involves meaningful participation of all members of the global community.

Equity is Sustainability

Sustainability is, ultimately, a very white and heteronormative space. And if we keep on that track, we won’t get very far. This being said – we need to recognize and support the “other” and engage all communities.

Equity IS Sustainability.”

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