Maine’s Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry (DACF) was, until November 10th, offering free state park passes based exclusively on race.
The initiative was made by Maine’s Nature Based Education Consortium (NBEC).
Despite desiring “to ensure that every Maine youth has access to powerful outdoor learning experiences,” as the NEBC says on its website, they focus their efforts on minority youth, rather than helping the poor regardless of race.
(The webpage for this program was deleted after reporters began asking questions.)
The NBEC and DACF partnered to raffle off state park passes to minorities as part of the Thrive Outside initiative.
“To acknowledge the barrier of costs and the commitment it takes to overcome it, our network is distributing free Maine state park passes to BIPOC Individuals, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color can enter a raffle to receive a pass,” the NBEC site states.
Maine is not the only state to incorporate a racial element into their state park initiatives.
Vermont’s park access initiative places racial minorities on the same level as the disabled and youth programs when giving out fiscal aid from their Park Access Fund.