The role of government in advancing racial equity
Many current inequities are sustained by historical legacies, structures and systems that repeat patterns of exclusion. Government has the ability to implement policy change at multiple levels and across multiple sectors to drive larger systemic change.
Racial equity means we eliminate racial disproportionalities so that race can no longer be used to predict success, and we increase the success of all communities. We set goals and measures to track our progress, with the recognition that strategies must be targeted to close the gaps. Systems and structures that are failing communities of color are actually failing all of us, economically and psychologically. Advancing racial equity is to our collective benefit.
GARE’s focus is on normalizing conversations about race, operationalizing new policies, practices and organizational cultures, and organizing to achieve racial equity. We are seeing more and more jurisdictions that are making a commitment to achieving racial equity, focusing on the power and influence of our own institutions, and working in partnership across sectors and with the community to maximize impact. There is an increasingly strong field of practice. We are organizing in government with the belief that the transformation of government is essential for us to advance racial equity and is critical to our success as a nation.
GARE’s strategies include:
- Organizing a membership network of jurisdictions that are working to advance racial equity
- Expanding pathways for new jurisdictions to begin doing racial equity work via work with individual jurisdictions
- Supporting and building local and regional collaborations that are broadly inclusive and focused on achieving racial equity
We have intentionally selected a network as a model, recognizing that there are commonalities across our jurisdictions, and that jurisdictions are also uniquely situated. A network allows us to expand a common field of practice, lift up success, and share information, ideas and resources in order to achieve individual and group goals. We have a field of practice that is member-generated and reflects shared values and objectives. As described in “Connecting to Change the World,” networking describes a process of using or creating connections between individuals, groups, or organizations to acquire resources and build power.