Nature is a Common Good that should be experienced, enjoyed, respected and inspiring to all. By connecting children and families to nature, Hawai`i Nature Center builds community, creates meaningful change and shapes a more sustainable future. In doing so, HNC models inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility (IDEA) as part of its policies, practices and procedures.
Hawai‘i Nature Center recognizes the need for more inclusivity and welcoming of all campers and participants with our gender-affirming policies and practices. This starts with the registration process, using preferred pronouns and camper/student use of bathroom. Because HNC does not track or report gender data, we will discontinue requiring that information on our registration forms. However, we want all campers to feel safe bringing their whole, authentic selves to our campus, so we will ask all campers to affirm their preferred pronouns.
Adopted from State of Hawai‘i Department of Education’s Guidance on support for transgender students:
PREFERRED NAMES & PRONOUNS Transgender and non-binary students/campers have the right to be addressed by a name and pronouns that correspond to their sincerely held gender identities. If requested by the student/camper, staff should address them by the name and pronouns that correspond to each of their sincerely held gender identities. This does not prohibit inadvertent slips, or honest mistakes, but does apply to intentional or persistent refusal to respect a student’s gender identity by staff or other students/campers, which should be considered an act of discrimination.
Educators and other HNC staff should be informed of the student’s preferred name on HNC’s rosters and of the preferred pronouns to use when addressing the camper. Educators and other staff should take care to ensure that a transgender or non-binary student’s legal name, if different from the student’s preferred name, is kept confidential. HNC will accept a camper’s/student’s sincerely held gender identity. A camper/student does not need a medical or mental health diagnosis or treatment threshold to have his or her gender identity recognized and respected. Every camper’s/student’s situation is different, if the parent/guardian requests or HNC deems it necessary, there should be a meeting between the camper, parent/guardian and HNC to discuss the types of support the camper/student is requesting. Support for transgender and non-binary campers should be applied consistently but also recognizing every child’s situation is unique and HNC needs to have some level of flexibility.
ACCESS TO RESTROOM FACILITIES While HNC’s campus has sex-segregated restroom facilities, boys and girls – not every toilet is fully enclosed for one’s individual privacy. In the traditional “boy’s” bathroom, there is a semi-private urinal. Therefore, to provide additional privacy, the main door to that bathroom can be closed for added privacy.
POLICY ADAPTABILITY HNC has made every effort to develop a comprehensive approach with this policy/guiding document. However, we recognize we may not have addressed every issue or aspect, but we are committed to learning and adapting, which may require changing our approach rapidly. HNC’s core intent is to provide support to all campers and create an environment that is welcoming, supportive and safe for all.