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KSRE Employee Resources

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Ernie Minton

As Director of K-State Research and Extension, I am firmly committed to our organization being an equal opportunity provider of programs and employer of individuals. In that spirit here is a message from Sonny Perdue, USDA Secretary stating the department's commitment to Civil Rights. K-State Research and Extension embraces this commitment.

"The hallmark of my tenure as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is to do right and feed everyone and I don’t intend for that to be just a hollow creed. This pledge is at the heart of our work, which includes our commitment to protecting the civil rights of all USDA employees and customers.

Doing right means treating all people equally, regardless of race, religion, gender, national origin, or any other characteristic. We are part of the same human family, imbued with dignity and worthy of respect. I expect every USDA employee to foster a workplace free from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation so everyone can reach his or her full potential. Our workplace will be a model for proper enforcement of civil rights protections, not only because it’s the law, but also because it’s the right thing to do.

Feeding everyone means it doesn’t matter what you look like or where you come from, USDA programs are for you. Hunger knows no color or creed. Whether we are responding to disasters with food aid, cultivating sustainable agriculture programs overseas, or improving school meals here at home, at USDA we know food has the power to unite.

When you start with a simple expression of integrity and equality, upholding civil rights and all the freedoms enshrined in our laws is not just compulsory, it becomes intrinsic. For that reason and working together, we will continue to return to our touchstone: Do right … by everyone … and feed everyone."

J. Ernest Minton,

Director of K-State Research and Extension


Key Elements of Civil Rights Compliance 

Key Elements of Civil Rights Compliance Kansas State University Research and Extension:  does not discriminate. does not provide services to agencies and organizations that engage in discrimination. has a responsibility to inform the public of these policies. proactively plans and implements its plans to meet compliance obligations. must document its progress in its efforts to comply with Civil Rights standards. must report its efforts to meet Civil Rights obligations. staff regularly evaluate their success and make adjustments for improving outreach and compliance.

Key Terms related to Civil Rights

Inclusion and Diversity Position Statement 

Prepared by the KSRE Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Task Force, January 2021


K-State Research and Extension’s mission is to provide research-based information to all the people of Kansas. In doing so, we are committed to providing equal opportunity in our workforce, programs, services, and activities. We recognize human difference enriches our lives, our work, and the communities across our state, and by committing to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion, we all become better human beings.

We acknowledge that the work of K-State Research and Extension takes place on Indigenous lands and in Indigenous spaces, and that our disciplines have not been historically and are not currently representative of the diversity of perspectives and backgrounds that make up Kansas, our nation, and our world. The future of our extension disciplines depends on our ability to incorporate emerging, as well as historically marginalized people and perspectives into our research, teaching, and extension work to meet current and future challenges. 

Each of us has a personal responsibility to ensure equal opportunity, diversity, and
inclusion is thoroughly understood, aggressively followed, and recognized as an integral part of the support we provide for every educational program developed and delivered, every research project we support, and in every opportunity for employment.

To thrive as an organization, we must cultivate an environment of diversity and inclusion that allows us to have differences of opinions in a climate of openness, mutual respect, and trust. We must operate on the premise that we cannot be effective without being fair and responsive. Let us pledge to enrich a culture that is inclusive and encourages collaboration, flexibility, and fairness to enable employees and program participants to contribute to their full capability.

View a printable PDF of this statement PDF