Just Communities Accredited Practitioner

We’re pleased to announce the launch of the Just Communities Accredited Practitioner program

The Just Communities Accredited Practitioner (AP) program is a continuing education and learning platform to support community leaders, city officials, and planning, design, and development professionals committed to using the Just Communities framework and promoting our principles. PSE is deeply committed to ensuring that the AP program is accessible to a diverse number of stakeholders, especially frontline resident leaders and practitioners of color who have been marginalized in  white-dominated planning, design, and development professions. The goal of the AP program is to diversify and expand the number of people in positions to influence and democratize development practices to result in better outcomes for communities and the environment. The AP program also helps support the growth of the Just Growth certification program by building a community of practitioners who can support communities with implementation and verification.

Four Reasons to Become a Just Communities AP

  1. The Urban and Community Development Field is Diversifying. Passing the Just Communities AP exam sets you apart as a practitioner who is dedicated to advancing racial equity and climate resiliency in all aspects of planning, design and development. The white dominant planning, design and development field is beginning to diversify, as we work to support a broader number of voices and lived experience to guide our work. The next generation of community and urban development demands that we improve the standard of living for millions of Black and disinvested communities of color, heal and repair our environment, and build climate resiliency into every investment.
  2. The Funding Landscape is Shifting to Heal and Repair Disenfranchised and Disinvested Frontline Communities. We have an unprecedented moment to make real progress in advancing equitable and regenerative development practices.  President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative requires, for the first time, that “40 percent of the overall benefits of certain Federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved, and overburdened by pollution.” The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 and Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is unleashing a tidal wave of federal investment to our cities to simultaneously address our crumbling physical infrastructure and growing climate emergency. Just Communities provides a comprehensive suite of services and tools to help communities organize, plan, and implement the kind of investments that these laws are intended to make, and are solely needed to bend the arc of urban and community development towards social, racial, and ecological healing and repair.
  3. Comprehensive Racial Equity, Climate Resiliency, and Sustainability Knowledge is Crucial. The Just Communities AP program provides fundamental knowledge of principles and strategies related to racial equity, climate resilience, environmental justice, community development, civic engagement, urban planning and design, sustainability, clean energy, public health, economic development, collaborative governance, collective impact, data analysis, and strategic planning.
  4. Join the Just Communities Family of Practitioners and Advocates. PSE is the world’s only Black-led urban and community development standard and verification platform. As a member of Just Communities AP family, you will have access to 1)  inspiring educational opportunities to expand your knowledge and build courage;  2) relevant case studies, best practices, and resources through the Just Communities Information Exchange and, 3) a supportive community of practice of global changemakers dedicated to advancing racial equity and climate resilience.

If you’re interested in learning more about the AP program or are currently an EcoDistricts AP looking for additional information on the transition of your credential, contact Alayne Hightower at ahightower@psequity.org.