In the very creation of the Department of Ecology, we were mandated to actively and always, reach to communities across Washington for public input. “It is the intent of the legislature that the . . . Department of Ecology, in consultation with affected constituent groups, continues appropriate public involvement and outreach mechanisms designed to provide cost-effective public input on their programs and policies.”
As the primary environmental agency in Washington State, we interact on a wide variety of environmental topics. A quick look at our home page under “Ecology For You” on the Web reveals just a few of the people we reach out to engage with and the means by which we connect. Prominent groups are: the public, businesses, other government agencies, educators and students, and scientists. Social media outreach includes: BlogSpot, Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Twitter and RSS Feed.
As well as a broad spectrum of stakeholder outreach strategies such as public hearings, meetings, workshops and open houses, specific committees on targeted topics are engaged for both short-term and long term input and consensus creation.
In the 39 counties of Washington State we have incredibly diverse ethnic populations as part of our communities. Our stakeholder engagement and outreach works directly with the 29 federally recognized tribes of Washington. In addition Ecology has materials translated into several languages, including Spanish in order to provide communication with non-native English speakers.
Ecology strives to work with all stakeholder groups. Identifiable stakeholders are specific to each project and may include public property users, small business owners, retailers, manufacturers or the general public. Ecology periodically provides training to staff for public involvement. Stakeholders can be identified in a variety of ways including: self-identification, staff identified, or by third party interests.
To learn more about Ecology stakeholder involvement opportunities, visit this page: http://www.ecy.wa.gov/about/getinvolved.html.
Ecology routinely forms partnerships with other government agencies, businesses, associations, and other non-governmental organizations. Examples of these partnerships include:
Sustainability reporting is an avenue for long term dialogue between stakeholders and reporting organizations.
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