In September 2016, in response to the demonstrations and civil unrest following the Keith Lamont Scott and Justin Carr shootings, the County Manager announced that Mecklenburg County would examine the County’s operational guidelines, policies, and procedures to ensure equal access to services for every resident who needs them. The examination would also ensure that County employees are treated equitably. Equity is a top priority for Mecklenburg County, and the initiatives around DEI have the full support of leadership.
To show its commitment to equity and inclusion, the Board of County Commissioners approved funding in FY18 to implement Equity Phase I – an initiative that is included in the County Manager’s work plan for FY18. Phase I includes conducting an enterprise wide equity assessment, providing training for leadership, and developing action plans. The County Manager also appointed an Equity and Inclusion manager within the County Manager’s Office to lead this effort.
In the implementation of its DEI Strategic Plan, the County aims to build upon the current organizational diversity training and other departmental initiatives. To continue building the capacity of the organization, it is critical that the County approaches equity work holistically and enterprise-wide.
Putting ideas into practice requires strong support from leadership and adopting DEI as a key value in the organization. With a shared understanding, the County can operationalize equity through new policies, procedures and institutional practices – both internally and in partnership with other institutions and the community.