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Equity Office

The City of Austin’s Equity Office provides leadership, guidance, and insight on equity to improve the quality of life for Austinites. We work to achieve the vision of making Austin the most livable city in the nation for all.

The Office strives to build and sustain a culture of equity across the city.

This requires tackling tough issues such as institutional racism and implicit bias. Creating a culture of equity will ensure we are meeting the needs of all residents.

Equity For ALL: A Forum for Solidarity and Resilience

The Equity Office is holding the inaugarual "Equity Forum," on Friday, December 7th, from 9:00 AM-4:00 PM at the Asian-American Resource Center. The Forum will bring together a multi-ethnic, multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional and anti-institutional cohort to discuss the Office's work, goals, and the organizing tradition which informs us. 

Featuring a Tai-Chi exercise from Asian-American Quality of LIfe Resource Advisory Commission Chair Vince Cobalis, a performance by Undoing Racism Austin's Daniel Llanes, and panels with the community and Staff members who empower our work!

There is no cost to attend, we just ask that you register at this link.

 

Equity Framework

The Equity Office has built its approach through partnerships with national partnerships. The Government Alliance on Race and Equity and Racial Equity Here have provided tremendous support. We believe racial equity requires a cycle of Normalizing, Organizing, and Operationalizing.

Normalizing

Institutional racism is like water to a fish. It's a fundamental reality of their existence, but invisible until it's pointed out. Normalizing works to point this out to City staff. We must establish a set of shared definitions and normalize the use of them. Working with race is uncomfortable. Providing support and exposing City Staff to the language of racial equity is one of the most important steps for the Equity Office.

Organizing

No individual department or organization can create racial equity on its own. Dismantling something so universal requires building relationships across the spectrum. The City of Austin has a diverse community organizing culture. The Office must stay grounded in the lived experience of Austin's communities of color. In Organizing, we ensure the work reflects the voice of those most harmed by inequity. Join the Office in working for racial equity here.

Operationalizing

This step brings the other steps together, and feeds back into them. In Operationalizing, the Office works to advance racial equity. With City departments, this means understanding where their work drives or addresses inequity. For special projects, such as the Bond Election Advisory Task Force, this means analyzing the proposals to consult on the impact to equity. Read more about the Equity Office's Programs here.