September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 59

Part of an exhibit at the National Civil Rights
Museum, which is also the site of the Assassination
of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., shows protestors.
include predominately white, middle class citizens. Furthermore,
communities with fewer Latino and Black residents
received higher park ratings using The Trust for
Public Land's ParkServe data (tpl.org/ParkServe).
Depending on the size and demographics of the area,
the disparities that exist today are connected to the history
of policies and practices put into place to maintain segregation.
This is demonstrated through the federal housing
policies that implemented segregation by creating suburban
neighborhoods specifically for working and middle
class white families. As a result, African Americans were
excluded from opportunities to purchase homes or mortgages
at comparable rates, known as " redlining. " Subsequently,
these areas received less government funding,
thus impacting resources available to establish equitable
and accessible parks and recreation programs. Moreover,
as African American communities grew and sought equitable
access to parks and recreation programs, the interaction
between neighboring communities increased.
With the majority of well-funded parks and recreation
programs exclusively located in predominantly white
communities, attempts were made to displace African
American communities or close and defund parks and
recreation programs. These efforts to close and defund,
rather than desegregate in an attempt to integrate, continue
to demonstrate the need for some peoples' willingness
to recognize and acknowledge the inequitable access to
parks and recreation programs.
Learning From the Past
As park and recreation professionals and academics
continue to focus on the need to establish equitable
parks, the willingness to recognize and evaluate the history
of segregation in leisure and recreation as it relates
to African Americans must be considered. Obtaining
historical information into how parks and recreation
programs were established helps to provide additional
insight into how programs are managed and the
need for additional support and resources to establish
equity in programs. While the responsibilities of each
park and recreation professional and academic varies
depending on the role, we must be willing to own the
responsibility if equity is truly our intent. To formulate
a strategy to combat the factors of inequities, we must
be able to recognize historical policies and practices put
into place during the Jim Crow era, which continue to
impact parks and recreation.
Kristine M. Fleming, Ed.D., is a Visiting Associate Professor
in the Department of Health, Physical Education and
Recreation at Florida A&M University.
PARK S ANDRECRE AT ION . OR G | SEP T EMBER 2 0 2 1
| Parks & Recreation
59
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September 2021 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of September 2021 - Parks & Recreation

September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Intro
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 1
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 2
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 3
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 4
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September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 6
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 6a
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 6b
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September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
September 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2021
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