“I have been in the dining hall at camp thousands of times, but one day, maybe five years ago, I walked around really looking closely at the old plaques and memorabilia on the wall. Among the many tributes to units, events, tent, and cabin families, I saw some images that shocked and saddened me—several stereotypical (and offensive) references to Native Americans, some words or descriptions that seemed sexist or racist, and then in the very corner I found a plaque that appeared to feature a genie in blackface. As a staff, we’d spent hours in that space talking about becoming our best selves, encouraging and recognizing others, and being accepting, yet we had missed very contradictory images that were right in front of us. I did a thorough scan of the space and removed anything that seemed offensive, stereotypical, or suggestive. It was a humbling and hard realization, but that moment led to some great and ongoing conversations among the staff about what else we’d been missing and a review of not only our spaces and imagery, but all of our activities, language, and presentations.”
—Hulbert, Staff Member, 2020
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