It’s Time to Put Racial Equity into Action
Introducing SACOG’s Racial Equity Action Plan to create a more inclusive region and agency
November 28, 2022: The last two years have been a journey of listening, learning, and understanding of the Sacramento Area Council of Governments’ (SACOG) role in advancing racial equity in the Sacramento region. While there are still a lot of lessons to uncover, the agency has committed to doing things differently with the Racial Equity Action Plan, adopted by the Board of Directors in October 2022.
The Racial Equity Action Plan puts into action the Racial Equity Statement of Change and Commitment approved earlier this year. The statement acknowledges SACOG’s role in creating and perpetuating racial disparities that are evident today and sets the foundation for how the agency tackles correcting those disparities.
The vision of SACOG and its leadership is to build a region where race and ethnicity are no longer predictors of health and economic outcomes. To do this, SACOG, with the assistance of leaders on the Race, Equity, and Inclusion (REI) Working Group, created an action plan that will begin to change how work is done at the agency. The plan is an intentional pursuit to retool how the agency executes projects and programs, and implements new ways to engage with the community.
“We’ve spent a lot of time planning and organizing for action on racial equity that is long overdue, especially for an organization of this magnitude,” said board chair and REI Working Group chair Rick Jennings. “I commend the SACOG board, staff, and REI Working Group members for their thoughtful and careful work developing this plan. They have shown that correcting racial disparities in the region is not impossible. I hope it inspires leaders to take on their own commitments to help achieve a more equitable region.”
More about the Racial Equity Action Plan
The action plan approaches goals in the areas of operations, programs, and practices that occur at the board level. The goals include a range of focuses such as reducing barriers to procurement, working with partner agencies to incorporate racial equity into their planning work, and assessing equity impacts of proposed policy decisions.
It is expected the action plan will evolve over time as these policies and programs become part of SACOG’s normal operating procedures. The REI Working Group will oversee the implementation of the plan and will continue making recommendations to ensure its effectiveness.
“This plan is about us learning how to do things differently,” said James Corless, SACOG executive director, while addressing the Board of Directors during the plan’s adoption. “It’s about thinking differently and engaging differently with our local governments and communities.”
Focus on the Racial Equity Action Plan and SACOG’s progress will continue as work is completed. Stay tuned for more updates.