Bridge Building, Intersectionality and Inclusion
The Oakland Public Library's Race & Equity Team was formed in June 2017 as part of a larger citywide movement to tackle and dismantle institutional racism within city government in hopes of achieving equity and opportunity for all Oakland residents, regardless of identity.
With general direction provided by the City's Department of Race and Equity (led by nationally-recognized race and equity expert Darlene Flynn) and support from the City's Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) cohort, the Library's Race & Equity Team is tackling institutional racism head-on with an ambitious agenda of training and programming for both staff and patrons.
The team is modeling a system-wide commitment to developing racial equity competency by engaging in the following endeavors:
-Developing standards of staff knowledge,
-Facilitating dialog and understanding of racial equity through training and discussion for staff and patrons,
-Working with department leadership and staff to identify opportunities to improve equity outcomes by applying an equity framework and tools internally (among staff) and externally (in the community),
-Provide support to work groups and individuals ensuring the inclusion of equity in all decision making processes in the Department on equity activities, programs, and initiatives, and
-Support development and implementation of Departments’ Racial Equity Strategic Plan.
This session will highlight the Race & Equity Team's charter, methodology, successes, and failures in fostering a system-wide understanding of and commitment to racial justice and equity in an especially trying sociopolitical climate.