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D.4
To: Board of Supervisors
From: Supervisors John Gioia and Federal D. Glover
Date: November  10, 2020
The Seal of Contra Costa County, CA
Contra
Costa
County
Subject: Establishing a County Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice and Launching a Community Planning Process

APPROVE OTHER
RECOMMENDATION OF CNTY ADMINISTRATOR RECOMMENDATION OF BOARD COMMITTEE

Action of Board On:   11/10/2020
APPROVED AS RECOMMENDED OTHER
Clerks Notes:

VOTE OF SUPERVISORS

AYE:
John Gioia, District I Supervisor
Candace Andersen, District II Supervisor
Diane Burgis, District III Supervisor
Karen Mitchoff, District IV Supervisor
Federal D. Glover, District V Supervisor
Contact: L. DeLaney, 925-335-1097
I hereby certify that this is a true and correct copy of an action taken and entered on the minutes of the Board of Supervisors on the date shown.
ATTESTED:     November  10, 2020
David Twa,
 
BY: , Deputy

 

RECOMMENDATION(S):

1. RECEIVE presentations by Supervisors Federal Glover and John Gioia, Donté Blue (Office of Reentry and Justice), Health Services, and Myra Chow (San Francisco Foundation) regarding history of racial equity efforts in Contra Costa County and need to establish an Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice.  
  

2. ACCEPT the Concept Proposal by Supervisors Federal Glover and John Gioia for a Contra Costa Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice (Attachment 1).  

  

RECOMMENDATION(S): (CONT'D)
3. ACKNOWLEDGE that Contra Costa County must eliminate the inequities, disparities and harm that exist in our County, including inequities and disparities in health outcomes, resource and service allocation, land use decisions (environmental justice), and law enforcement and criminal justice system practices.  
  
4. ACKNOWLEDGE that we must create a sense of urgency for change so that we cultivate and sustain a County ecosystem rooted in belonging, mutuality, equity, and justice. The need for change is urgent, and the opportunity for change is now.  
5. ACKNOWLEDGE that we must make a transformational shift within County government to eliminate inequity, harm, discrimination, and bias (implicit and explicit) based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, language, immigration status, socio-economic status, and for people with disabilities by focusing County efforts on understanding what it takes to achieve equity with a priority focus on racial equity.  
  
6. ACKNOWLEDGE the $250,000 in funding provided by community organizations, foundations and businesses to the Contra Costa Regional Health Foundation (as fiscal agent) to fund a community planning process to provide input into the structure of the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice and determine its priorities.  
  
7.AUTHORIZE the establishment of an Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice in the County Administrator’s Office consistent with the principles set forth in the Concept Proposal (Attachment 1) and the final recommendations of the Community Planning Process (Attachment 2).  
  
8. AUTHORIZE the immediate launch of a Community Planning Process consistent with the Proposed Community Planning Process Document (Attachment 2) as funded by community organizations, foundations and businesses.AUTHORIZE the County Administrator to provide staff support for the immediate launch of the Community Plannning Process.  
  
9. AUTHORIZE the County Administrator to provide staff support for the immediate launch of the Community Planning Process.  
  
10. ACKNOWLEDGE that it is anticipated that at the completion of the Community Planning Process (estimated for May 2021), the annualized cost of the operation of the office (3 staff positions) will be $600,000 which will be allocated during the 2021-22 budget process.  
  

FISCAL IMPACT:

$250,000 contributed by external organizations and businesses (one-time funding for Community Planning Process).  
$600,000 in County General Fund (annual revenue to fund the operations of the Office)  

BACKGROUND:

NEED FOR AN OFFICE OF RACIAL EQUITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE IN CONTRA COSTA COUNTY  
  
Racism, inequity, injustice, disparities and harm exist throughout the United States and here in Contra Costa County. The recent increased protests for racial equity and social justice reflect a growing mood across the United States that there is a sense of urgency to take meaningful and impactful action to end systemic racism, discrimination and hate.  
  
Racial and ethnic disparities in health outcomes, the criminal justice system, educational achievement, and social service metrics exist here in Contra Costa County. These disparities have been well-documented in reports issued by the Contra Costa Racial Justice Task Force/Oversight Body, First Five Contra Costa, Contra Costa Health Services and the Contra Costa Employment and Human Services Department.  
  
In order to make a transformational shift within County Government to eliminate inequity, harm, discrimination and bias based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, language, immigration status, socio-economic status, and for people with disabilities, with an initial priority focus on racial equity, Supervisors John Gioia and Federal Glover have developed a “Concept Proposal for a Contra Costa Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice” – fully set forth in Attachment 1  
  
HISTORY OF COUNTY AND COMMUNITY WORK IN CONTRA COSTA TO ADVANCE EQUITY  
  
While there is a history of equity and social justice initiatives in Contra Costa, there is clearly much more work that needs to occur to make our County equitable and just. A list of some of the County’s past and existing equity and social justice initiatives is set forth in the “Concept Proposal for a Contra Costa Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice” (Attachment 1). These efforts include:

  • Hiring Outreach Oversight Committee
  • Racial Justice Task Force
  • Racial Justice Oversight Body
  • Advisory Council on Equal Employment Opportunity
  • Contra Costa CARES (healthcare regardless of immigration status)
  • Implicit Bias Training
  • Workforce Diversity Training
  • EEO Outreach and Recruitment Programs
  • EEO Discrimination Complaint Investigation
  • Office of Reentry & Justice
  • Stand Together Contra Costa (Rapid Response Services to protect families from deportation)
  • Get Connected Contra Costa
  • Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) Participation
  • Draft Racial Equity Action Plan (REAP)
  • Human Resource’s Bridge to Success program (for people with disabilities)
  • Human Resource’s “Adverse Impact Review on Job Exams”
  • General Plan Process to create Environmental Justice policies
  • Environmental Justice Seats on the County Sustainability Commission and Hazardous Materials Commission
  • Health Services equity initiatives to reduce health disparities (and Equity Officer)
  • Employment and Human Services Department initiatives to promote equity
  • Impact Justice Diversion Program in the District Attorney’s Office
  • Gateways for Growth Challenge planning process to support immigrant inclusion/equity
  
Creating an Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice has been discussed for several years by the County’s Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) Cohort. The GARE Cohort developed a proposal for an Office of Human Rights and Equity in 2017, and again developed a comprehensive Racial Equity Action Plan in 2019 which also recommended establishing an Office of Equity & Immigrant Inclusion. Their work has laid a strong foundation for the momentum to create this Office.  
  
Our County also has a rich history of equity and social justice efforts led by community-based organizations. Indeed, it has been strong advocates and community-based organizations who have led much of the racial equity and social justice work in our County. These efforts include advocacy, organizing, direct service, and coalition-building. There are multiple, intersecting efforts underway led by many community members, organizations, agencies, and coalitions throughout our County. Examples include the work of the following organizations and coalitions:
  • Contra Costa Alliance to End Abuse
  • Contra Costa Budget Justice Coalition
  • Contra Costa Community Care Coalitions
  • Contra Costa Immigrant Rights Alliance
  • Contra Costa National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMMI)
  • Contra Costa Racial Justice Coalition
  • Ensuring Opportunity Campaign to End Poverty in Contra Costa
  • Healthy Richmond
  • Lift Up Contra Costa
  • Multi-Faith Action Coalition
  • NAACP Chapters
  • Safe Return Project
All of these efforts continue with urgency and strong momentum; but there remains much work to be done to truly realize a Contra Costa community that is welcoming, equitable and just for all.  
  
It is essential to work with these community partners and others who are already doing the work of racial equity and social justice, and to look to them to provide stewardship, consultation and partnership in this effort.   
  
All of this County and community work has laid a strong foundation for establishing an Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice.  
  
MISSION AND GOALS OF THE OFFICE  
  
Creating a Contra Costa County Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice will:
  • Enable the County, working with the community (including community organizations and leaders, cities and school districts), to better coordinate, strengthen and expand the County’s existing work on equity and inclusion.
  • Create new opportunities to deepen the work.
  • Allow the County to better partner with the community in prioritizing and implementing this work.
The goal of this work is to promote equity and eliminate disparities and harm in Contra Costa County with the initial priority to eliminate structural racism.  
  
The Mission and Goals of a County Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice include:
  • To make a transformational shift within County government to eliminate inequity, harm, discrimination and bias (implicit and explicit) based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, language, immigration status, socio-economic status, and for people with disabilities by focusing County efforts on understanding what it takes to achieve equity with a priority focus on racial equity.
  • Acknowledge and eliminate inequities, disparities and harm that exist in Contra Costa County, including inequities and disparities in health outcomes, resource and service allocation, land use decisions (environmental justice), and law enforcement and criminal justice system practices.
  • Create a sense of urgency for change so that we cultivate and sustain a County ecosystem rooted in belonging, mutuality, equity, and justice. The need for change is urgent; and the opportunity for change is now.
  
  
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT AND PLANNING PROCESS TO INFORM THE CREATION OF THE OFFICE   
  
An inclusive and robust community planning process is vital and necessary to determine how the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice is structured and operated, and ultimately determine the final name for the Office. Attachment 2 sets forth this proposed process.  
  
Supervisors Gioia and Glover, working with an initial planning team have raised $250,000 towards a robust community engagement and planning process which will include a listening campaign of Contra Costa residents centering the experiences of our County’s Black communities and communities of color.   
  
An initial planning group comprised of Supervisors Gioia and Glover, Erika Jenssen and Shannon Ladner-Beasley of Contra Costa Health Services, Susun Kim of the Family Justice Center, Kanwarpal Dhaliwal of RYSE, Jen Leland of East Bay Agency for Children, and Reggie Caldwell of Public Health Advocates have developed a structure for a community process, which will be led by a Community Engagement Table composed of representatives from:
  • Budget Justice Coalition
  • Contra Costa Alliance to End Abuse
  • Contra Costa Care Call Conveners – RYSE and Family Justice Center
  • Contra Costa Central Labor Council
  • Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office
  • Contra Costa GARE Cohort
  • Contra Costa Health Services
  • Contra Costa Immigrant Rights Alliance
  • Contra Costa Public Defender’s Office
  • Contra Costa Racial Justice Oversight Body
  • Ensuring Opportunity Campaign to End Poverty in Contra Costa
  • First Five Contra Costa
  • Healthy Richmond
  • Lift Up Contra Costa
  • Multi-Faith Action Coalition
  • NAACP – Contra Costa chapters
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMMI) Contra Costa
  • Racial Justice Coalition
  • Safe Return Project
  • Resident leaders from most impacted/burdened communities from East, Central, and West Contra Costa County
  • Others as determined by listed partners
This community engagement table will design and implement the community engagement process across all regions of the County.   
  
This community planning process as set forth in Attachment 2 will inform the following actions:
  • Develop the final structure, roles and responsibilities of the Office
  • Develop a plan reflecting the community’s priorities for the work of the Office
  • Develop a plan for how the Office is transparently accountable to the public
The following organizations/businesses have committed the following amounts to fund and support the community planning process:
  • Contra Costa Regional Health Foundation - $20,000 (which will also serve as the Fiscal Agent)
  • East Bay Community Foundation - $10,000
  • John Muir Community Benefits - $5,000
  • John Muir Health Foundation - $10,000
  • Dean and Margaret Lesher Foundation - $25,000
  • Public Health Advocates - $25,000
  • Republic Services - $25,000
  • Richmond Community Foundation - $5,000
  • San Francisco Foundation - $75,000
  • The California Endowment - $25,000
  • Y&H Soda Foundation - $25,000
A complete description of the Community Planning Process, which will be fully funded by the identified funders, is set forth in Attachment 2.  
  
The work and recommendations of this Community Planning Process will inform the final structure and priorities of the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice, including the determination of the name of the Office.  
  
STRUCTURE OF THE OFFICE OF RACIAL EQUITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE  
  
An Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice will be established within the County Administrator’s Office with direct accountability to the Board of Supervisors and the public. The Office shall initially be comprised, at a minimum, of the following core staff:
  • 1.0 FTE Director of the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice
  • 1.0 FTE Program Analyst for the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice
  • 1.0 FTE clerical support staff for the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice
Based on estimates from the County Administrator’s Office, the estimated annual budget for these positions is $500,000 to $600,000.  
  
There are existing and planned equity efforts in various County departments that could either work with the Office of Racial Equity and Social Justice or be consolidated in that Office. That determination would be made by the Board of Supervisors after the completion of the Community Planning Process. Those efforts include: Office of Reentry and Justice, Health Services Equity Officer, Library and Human Resource equity efforts, and CAO’s Affirmative Action Office.  
  

CLERK'S ADDENDUM

Speakers: Roxanne, Health Richmond Network; Tracy Walker, Steward Local 856; Dan Geiger, Budget Justice Coalition; Phil Arnold; Marianna Moore, Ensuring Opportunity Campaign; Ruth Fernandez; Linda Olvera; Yehudi Leberman; Jane Fishburg, Rubicon; Doug Leach, Multi-Faith Action Coalition; Hector, Ensuring Opportunity Campaign.

Writeen commentary received from: Marti Roach, 350 Contra Costa; Bette Felton, Chair, Contra Costa Regional Health Foundation; Jen Leland, East Bay Agency for Children.

ADOPTED the recommendations with Recommendation No. 10 amended to read: ACKNOWLEDGE that it is anticipated that at the completion of the Community Planning Process (estimated for May 2021), the annualized cost of the operation of the office which will be allocated during the 2021-22 budget process.  

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