The MDASLA supports the fight against racial injustice, police violence, and inequality. We are appalled at the most recent acts of violence against Black Americans, knowing that these are just the latest examples of a systemic problem. Systematic racism has often taken hold in the design of the built environment, no more evident than in the redlining of Baltimore and beyond. We must acknowledge the unacceptability of these racist policies and actively work to remedy them through our words and actions. How can we protect the “health, safety, and welfare” of the public without taking these issues head-on? Our profession can be a positive force against prejudice. It is common knowledge that our industry does not remotely reflect a racial cross-section of the country. There is work to be done to remedy this. Inclusivity and support of Black designers, students, and educators should be one of the critical focuses of landscape architects. Change through design is often a drawn-out process, but today it must be an immediate concern. We stand in solidarity with those peacefully protesting in the street, calling for a better future and life for themselves and their families. We stand with those demanding change. It will require continued focus and steadfast commitment to challenge racism in America. Together we can bring about a more peaceful society and resist the tides of racism and prejudice. Black. Lives. Matter.
Benjamin Boyd, PLA, ASLA
President - Maryland Chapter