The Park District of Highland Park strives to serve as the center of the community and to be our residents’ first choice for recreational services. Our adopted policies, procedures, and programs are committed to creating an inclusive environment where all individuals are treated with respect and dignity.
The Park District of Highland Park pledges:
- To be an ally for inclusion
- To be committed to progress that eliminates discrimination and promotes diversity
- To be accountable to showing respect for the dignity and self-worth of every individual
The Park District of Highland Park is an ally for inclusion and equitable access, where everyone is afforded the same rights and opportunities that result in a sense of belonging, and the ability to safely express themselves authentically, without judgement.
The Park District of Highland Park provides programs, activities, and facilities without discrimination or segregation on the grounds of race, color, religion, national origin, veteran status, age, handicap or disability, sexual orientation or gender. No participant or spectator shall, on the basis of race, sex, creed, national origin or disability, be denied equal access to programs, activities, services or benefits, or be limited in the exercise of any right, privilege, advantage or opportunity.
Recreation Purpose Statement
We strive to use our resources wisely and become more sustainable in our day-to-day operations; to provide positive recreational experiences through programs, camps, memberships, drop-in services, private and group lessons, special events, leagues, tournaments, rentals, and other activities which contribute to the individual’s physical, social, emotional, cultural, and educational growth in order to enrich the quality of life. Respect for the dignity and self-worth of every individual shall be of paramount importance.
The Park District of Highland Park does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, (including pregnancy, gender identity, gender expression, gender change, gender orientation, gender stereotyping, or transgender status), sexual orientation, age, national origin, parental status, political affiliation, genetic information, marital status, veteran status, disability, membership in an organization, age, reprisal, or other unlawful factors.
This policy is designed to create a safe and inclusive environment in which community members, visitors and participants can be honest and open about who they are and feel comfortable using District facilities, participating in programs and attending Park District events.
It is the District’s policy to treat everyone with dignity and respect and to provide facilities, services, programs and events that are free of discrimination whether that discrimination is based upon race, color, religion, gender (including pregnancy, gender identity, gender expression, gender change, gender orientation, gender stereotyping, or transgender status), national origin, disability, parental status, political affiliation, genetic information, marital status, membership in an organization, age, reprisal, or other unlawful factors. The Park District offers programs, services, facilities and events consistent with its obligation to maintain an environment that is free of discrimination, including discrimination that is based upon gender identity or perceived gender non-conformity.
The Park District of Highland Park believes that our employees should be able to work in an atmosphere free from all forms of harassment. Therefore, it is our policy to prohibit all types of harassment, including but not limited to harassment based on: sex, sexual orientation or identity, race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, citizenship, marital status, veteran status, genetic information, or any other basis prohibited by law. This policy extends to each and every level of our operations. Accordingly, harassment, whether by an employee, officer, park commissioner, agent, volunteer, vendor or any person using Park District property or services, will not be tolerated by the Park District.
Equal Opportunity Employer
Equal opportunity has been, and will continue to be, a fundamental principle at the Park District of Highland Park. In accordance with federal, state, and local law, it is the policy of the Park District to provide equal employment opportunities to all qualified persons. In order to provide equal employment and advancement opportunities to all individuals, employment decisions at the District will be based on merit, qualifications, and abilities. The District does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and sexual harassment), sexual orientation (including gender identity), marital status, veteran status, citizenship status, national origin, ancestry, age, order of protection status, disability, genetic information, handicap, military status, record of arrest, or any other characteristic or classification protected by applicable federal, state, or local laws.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)/Special Accommodations
The Park District of Highland Park encourages participation by everyone! If you or a family member have special needs and would like to participate in a program, we will be happy to make reasonable modification(s) to meet your needs. Please indicate on the registration form if you would like information regarding our inclusion programs and/or specifically identifying any need for and request for reasonable modification(s) according to the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The Park District of Highland Park provides recreational opportunities for all residents of Highland Park. People with and without disabilities are encouraged and invited to register for all Park District of Highland Park programs of interest. People with disabilities will not be discriminated against in the delivery of Park District of Highland Park programs.
Services to Residents with Disabilities
The Park District of Highland Park is a partner with Northern Suburban Special Recreation Association (NSSRA). Formed in 1970, NSSRA is an extension of ten park districts, two cities and one village in the northern suburbs of Chicago and provides and facilitates year-round recreation programs and services for children, teens and adults with disabilities. NSSRA offers recreation, sport, cultural, social, programs and events available throughout the year, creating new experiences, opportunities for skill development, leisure time, and perhaps most importantly, friendship. NSSRA has been creating an environment of belonging through play since 1970, and has the distinction of being the first Special Recreation Association in the country.
We believe that everyone should have the chance to try something new. This means you have the opportunity to participate in any one of NSSRA’s over 500 annual programs, or that you have the opportunity to participate in one of Park District of Highland Park’s programs with the assistance of an NSSRA Inclusion companion.
Park District of Highland Park program Inclusion Services are available to residents with special needs at no additional cost to the family. Inclusion Services may include, when necessary, staff training, program modifications/adaptations, modified equipment and program observations.
Reasons to Request Inclusion Services
- A parent or family member recognizes that a participant would benefit from additional support in a [Partner Agency] program
- Park District of Highland Park staff identifies a need for additional support, for safety and programmatic reasons, and communicates this need to the family
Requesting Inclusion Services
When registering for a Park District of Highland Park program for the first time:
- Mark the accommodation section of the registration form to indicate that the participant will require assistance from NSSRA
- Once your registration form is submitted, the Park District of Highland Park will contact you to discuss the type of Inclusion support needed for the participant
- The Park District of Highland Park will provide NSSRA with an Inclusion request that contains both program and participant information
- You will be contacted by NSSRA to discuss the needs of the participant and get input on the type of support required
- NSSRA will work with the Park District of Highland Park to put the necessary Inclusion accommodations in place for participation in the desired program(s)
- Communication between you, NSSRA, and the Park District of Highland Park staff continues throughout the Inclusion process
ADA Transition Plan
The Park District strives to provide accessible parks and facilities throughout the District. The ADA Transition Plan highlights the District’s efforts and plans for future initiatives and is updated annually. If you have any questions about the ADA Transition Plan, please contact Amalia Schwartz, Senior Planner, 847-579-4090 firstname.lastname@example.org
To view the ADA Transition Plan, click here.
Recreation Program Manager
Park District of Highland Park
Recreation Manager for Inclusion
1221 County Line Rd
Highland Park, IL 60035