March for Science
Earth Day April 22, 2017
We want to clear up a few things about what the March for Science stands for.
Our mission is to champion robustly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity. We unite as a diverse, non-partisan group to call for science that upholds the common good, and for political leaders and policymakers to enact evidence-based policies in the public interest.
Inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility are integral to this mission and to our overall goals and principles. People have rightly pointed out that some of our own public communications, including social media posts, have not affirmed this stance. We hear your feedback and have been working to align our communications with our values. We are actively partnering with and seeking advice from organizations and individuals with expertise in this area. We cannot ignore issues of racism, sexism, homophobia, ableism, xenophobia, or any other form of discrimination in the discussion and implementation of science. Nor can we ignore the ways in which science has been misused to harm marginalized communities. The lack of inclusivity and diversity in STEM thwarts scientific advancements not only by limiting who conducts the research, but also by influencing what topics are studied, who participates in the research, and who will benefit from or be harmed by it.
The March for Science is an opportunity to advance important dialogues, both within the scientific community and with the public, on how we engage with policy and politics. It was a mistake to ever imply that the March for Science is apolitical — while this march is explicitly non-partisan, it is political. We do not endorse any candidates or political parties, but we do advocate for all policy makers to enact evidence-based policies in the public interest. Politics and science are intertwined, whether we face a travel ban that restricts the free flow of scientific ideas, changes in education policy that diminish students' exposure to science, or budget cuts that restrict the availability of science for making policy decisions.
We’d like to thank everyone who has offered criticisms of our communications and approach. We appreciate your time and attention. You have pushed us to dig deeper and do better. Keep pushing us. That some critics have been met with harassment, instead of openness and respect, is unacceptable. We have developed an anti-online harassment policy that addresses this behavior. Envisioning and creating this together is going to require some hard and uncomfortable conversations. We’re committed to continually learning, growing, and improving as we work to strengthen both the scientific community and the communities we serve.
The March for Science is building a grassroots movement that champions the role of science in serving society and advancing the common good, and inspires the scientific community to engage in politics and policy. We’re in this for the long haul. Our bottom line message is that science serves -- we use science to predict the weather, treat people who are ill and injured, protect our water and air quality, and put food on our tables. We engage in politics to protect our families, our communities, and our collective future. We commit to promoting inclusivity and diversity within science and beyond it. We stand together against policies that silence, mischaracterize, or restrict science. We oppose threats to eliminate public agencies, the rejection of scientific evidence, and attempts to silence and censor scientists. We will work to become stronger partners with the communities we serve, and to ensure that policymakers understand and appreciate the vital services science provides.
We look forward to seeing you on April 22!
The March for Science Team