Over 150 people committed to racial equity gathered in Boston on October 1st to participate in the “Advancing Racial Equity: the Role of Government” workshop. Participants included people from within government, including strong contingents from local, regional and state government, along with a wide range of community members and community based organizations. The workshop, led by Government Alliance on Race and Equity Director Julie Nelson and Center for Social Inclusion President Glenn Harris, focused on the necessity of government transformation in order to achieve racial equity in our communities. They highlighted national best practices — normalizing racial equity as a key value, operationalizing racial equity via new policies and institutional practice, and organizing, both internally and in partnership with other institutions and the community. The workshop also featured use of racial equity tools that can be used in decisions relating to policies, practices, programs and budget.
The lunchtime panel focused on opportunities for government to advance racial equity in the Greater Boston Region and featured:
- Felix Arroyo, Cabinet Chief, Health and Human Services, City of Boston
- Atyia Martin, Chief Resiliency Officer, City of Boston
- Tom Keiffer, Executive Director, Southern Jamaica Plains Health Center
- Leon Andrews, Director, Race, Equity and Leadership (REAL), National League of Cities
You can watch the panel online, courtesy of the City of Boston cable channel.
At the end of the day, Nelson and Harris commented, “The passion, commitment, skill and expertise in the room was impressive. It was inspiring for us to spend the day with you. The greater Boston region is poised to more intentionally use the leverage and power of government to advance racial equity.
Congratulations to local organizers: Boston Tenant Coalition, City of Boston Office of Fair Housing and Equity, On the Move (OTM), Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center, Boston Racial Justice and Equity Collaborative, Somerville Community Corporation, and Action for Regional Equity, and a special thanks to New England Blacks in Philanthropy and the city of Boston Office of Fair Housing and Equity for financial support of the workshop.”
For more information about next steps, please contact:
Julie Nelson, Government Alliance on Race and Equity
Janine Anzalota, City of Boston Office of Fair Housing and Equity
Kathy Brown, Boston Tenant Coalition