The Government Alliance on Race and Equity

The Government Alliance on Race and Equity


A social movement that only moves people is
merely a revolt A movement that changes both people and institutions is a revolution The Government Alliance on Race And Equity is a national network of local government
working to advance racial equity and lift up outcomes for everyone GARE is helping people to understand that
the government had a role in creating racial inequity and creating racial disparities. We have to normalize conversations about race That means that we have commonly held definitions That we’re working from a shared framework
and a shared understanding My observation and experience was that we
had to move beyond the conversations about diversity and inclusion and really talk about racism, and structural
racism, and systemic racism. How that contributed and how it continues
to contribute to the disparities that we see in our community. Looking at redlining, looking at urban renewal
and normalizing that dialogue so that there’s a much more broad understanding
about the root causes of disparity in communities of color, and how we have an opportunity to do something about that. The city of Saint Paul set a goal for all
employees to go through our Racial Equity Foundations
training by the end of 2017 and we were able to achieve that goal. We’ve been working at this for a long time
in the city Taking them through a series ‘Race: The
Power Of An Illusion’ so people could understand why we’re even coming at this work. We have trained over 5,000 employees Through that, the conversation around race
became normalized Operationalizing racial equity means that
we’re not just talking about theory that we’re actually creating change. We’re taking ideas and putting them into
practice using the Racial Equity Tool and developing racial equity action plans. We were able to put in place a racial equity
toolkit and through that we were able to work with
other government agencies in the City of Portland to start talking about the outcomes we want
to see in the services that we provide. One of the most exciting things that the SFPUC
is working on to advance racial equity is really this place based investment in Bayview
Hunters Point in which we have our Southeast Treatment Plant
where we treat 80% of the cities sewage. It is a huge opportunity to really deeply
invest in a historic African American neighborhood. Creating a space where, if you’re working
for the City of Saint Paul, that means you’re looking at everything from a racial equity
lens and that you’re going to put together an action plan and that your supervisor is
going to hold you accountable for achieving those goals. We finally got a Workforce Equity Strategic
Plan that has been resourced by council and the mayor. One of the things that we did in order to
get that plan in place was to go out and have focus groups with our employees. We are creating an entire program of training
and workshop type deals so that all 2,500 managers and supervisors in the city will
be required to go through this Organizing means that within the institutions
we’re building skills, we’re building capacity, to actually transform the organization. What I’m most excited about happening is
a true community engagement I’d like to see a full integration of all
of these entities coming together under the infrastructure that GARE provides. If we are to get to the kind of democratic,
just, society we want, it’s only going to happen locally, with local government. And it will be the culmination of all that
work, that finally shows us as a nation, how we lead.

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