Racial Equity Business Plan

In October, 2020, the City Council unanimously adopted its first Racial Equity Business Plan. This plan is an evolving document to guide the City's racial equity work. It was developed by the Racial Equity Coordinator in collaboration with the City's Executive Leadership Team.

The plan captures ongoing equity and inclusion priorities from the Council's Strategic Plan. It provides goals, strategies, and performance measures that will move the work forward. 

Full text of the Racial Equity Business Plan

Overview

The City’s Racial Equity Business Plan is an evolving document intended to guide the City's racial equity work in the near future. It was developed by the Racial Equity Coordinator in collaboration with the City's Executive Leadership Team. The plan captures ongoing equity and inclusion priorities from the Council's Strategic Plan and provides goals, strategies, and performance measures that will move the work forward.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do we focus on race? What about other types of discrimination (gender, sexuality, disability, age, etc.?)
Throughout history, government has created and perpetuated racial inequities. These inequities are deep and pervasive and spread across all indicators for success. BIPOC communities fare worse than their white counterparts in all areas of life when it comes to societal outcomes. The City is mindful that there is a wide range of equity issues deserving attention while leading the discussion with race.

Why are we responsible for racial disparities we didn’t create?
The government’s role in the taking of land, labor, and resources created unlimited opportunities for wealth and stability that America continues to benefit from today. We must go beyond individual, intentional discrimination or acts of bigotry and examine the systems in which we all live. We must investigate—honestly—how our longstanding systems, policies, and practices, unintentionally or not, have created and continue to maintain racial disparities in our communities.

As we work to diversify our workforce, how do we ensure we do not hire less qualified candidates?
We first strive to eliminate these types of questions from the conversation. While it may sound harmless at first, such questions are a product of societal myths about the competence and abilities of racially diverse groups. This notion that diversifying the workforce means lowering the quality-of-hire is misinformed. Furthermore, the City will not make hiring decisions based on race.

Resource Needs

Implementation of the racial equity business plan requires a commitment of time and resources to staff members’ individual learning. Additional FTEs are needed for training and program management, and evaluation support. As the work develops and expands, staff will identify and request additional resource needs.

Accountability

Accountability is the most critical component of the racial equity action plan. Staff will create/adopt processes and tools that evaluate and track identified performance measures to determine the impact of the work. This includes, but is not limited to, community progress reports, inclusive culture surveys, and continued investment in resources.

The City of Bloomington’s workforce reflects the diversity of the community across the breadth and depth of the organization.

Goals (What do we want?)

  1. Increase diversity of workforce so that it mirrors the population we serve.
  2. Increase diversity in city leadership positions.

Need (Why do we want it?)

One of our nation’s foundational principles is that the government should represent the people it serves. However, traditionally Government has both explicitly and implicitly prevented non-white residents from participating in government jobs, resulting in the underrepresentation of BIPOC employees.

In the upcoming years, Minnesota employment statistics confirm a projected workforce shortage. Conversely, non-white populations are growing more quickly than the White population in the MSP region. To meet future workforce needs, Minnesota employers must attract and retain more workers, of all races. By diversifying its workforce, the City of Bloomington works to eliminate disparities in employment and attract the future workforce needed for our City to remain economically competitive and ensure a shared quality of life for all residents.

Furthermore, in Bloomington, the percentage of non- white residents has increased from just one percent in 1970 to 28% in 2018. As the racial/ethnic diversity of Bloomington residents continues to expand, it is critical that we draw insights and opinions from employees with different backgrounds and perspectives while simultaneously becoming more responsive to the needs of a changing populace. A diverse workforce increases Bloomington's capacity to serve and protect people who have different experiences or backgrounds and enhance its ability to be receptive to different traditions and ideas.

Strategies (How do we get it?)

The City of Bloomington is committed to diversifying its workforce. The City will not hire staff based on their race. That practice would directly contradict our principles of equity and inclusion. However, the City will endeavor to have the composition of its workforce mirror the diversity of the population we serve.

  • To accomplish such the City will:
  • Incorporate commitment to equity and inclusion in all workforce hiring, advancement, retention and succession planning efforts.*
  • Design and implement proactive recruitment strategies (including pathway programs).**
  • Review job postings utilizing a racial equity lens.*
  • Provide racial equity training for hiring managers.**
  • Incorporate racial equity as a core competency/value in job descriptions.*

Performance Measures (How do we measure progress?)

  • % of BIPOC applicants in the pool of candidates
  • % of BIPOC FT City Employees
  • % of BIPOC PT City Employees
  • % of BIPOC new hires
  • % of BIPOC resignations
  • % of BIPOC interns
  • # of BIPOC employees in leadership positions
  • # of new or revised job descriptions that incorporate racial equity as a desired competency

Legend

*   Started/starting

**  Near future

*** Will take more time

The City of Bloomington is committed to fostering a culture that values and advances racial equity

Goals (What do we want?)

Create and support an inclusive culture that values and advances racial equity.

Need (Why do we want it?)

As the City diversifies its workforce, we must intentionally make an effort to create a workplace where racial and ethnically diverse employees feel welcome and valued. A welcoming and inclusive culture allows the City of Bloomington to not only recruit, but also retain, diverse talent.

Strategies (How do we get it?)

The City of Bloomington is committed to fostering a culture that values and advances racial equity.

To accomplish such the City will:

  • Articulate racial equity as a core component of the City’s organizational mission, values and vision by adopting a racial equity business plan.*
  • Implement organizational-wide racial equity and cultural competence training.*
  • Develop inclusion plans and incorporate racial equity training in onboarding process.**
  • Convene racial equity action teams. Each department will develop a racial equity action plan.*
  • Develop/conduct /analyze an inclusive culture survey.
  • Evaluate progress on racial equity and cultural competency goals via performance appraisals/evaluations.**
  • Document, analyze, and address complaints of racial discrimination in the workforce.**

Performance Measures (How do we measure progress?)

  • % of FT and PT employees attending racial equity- training
  • % of supervisors & managers who complete inclusive workforce training
  • # of complaints of racial discrimination in the workforce.
  • Employee inclusive culture survey results.
  • Employee engagement survey results disaggregated by race.

Legend

*   Started/starting

**  Near future

*** Will take more time

The City of Bloomington is committed to racial equity in the design of our services and programs.

Goals (What do we want?)

  1. Utilize racial equity tools to integrate consideration of racial equity in decisions, including policies, practices, program initiatives, programs, budget, and CIP issues to address the impacts on racial equity.
  2. Collect, track, and analyze the racial demographics of residents utilizing City programs and receiving services.
  3. Develop strategies to eliminate racial disparities in the City of Bloomington including, but not limited to, inequitable access and opportunity in housing, employment, education, and recreation.

Need (Why do we want it?)

When racial equity is not explicitly brought into operations and decision-making, racial inequities are likely to be perpetuated. Without intentional intervention, institutions and structures will continue to perpetuate racial inequities. Racial equity tools provide a structure for institutionalizing the consideration of racial equity. Utilizing racial equity tools will help the City of Bloomington develop strategies and actions that reduce racial inequities and improve success for all residents.

Strategies (How do we get it?)

The City of Bloomington is committed to improve planning, decision-making, and resource allocation leading to more racially equitable policies and programs.

To accomplish such the City will:

  • Identify policies that create /continue racial disparities/inequities**
    • Develop and implement racial equity toolkit training.
    • Staff will incorporate racial equity toolkit findings in requests for council action (RCA).
    • If racial inequities are identified, staff and Council will discontinue/revise policies/activities that perpetuate racial inequities.
  • Collect, track, and analyze the racial demographics of residents utilizing City programs and receiving services.***
  • Research, evaluate, and modify internal City policies/practices that may result in inequitable access to housing, employment, and education within the broader community.***
  • Make staff aware of community racial disparities impacting their work.**

Performance Measures (How do we measure progress?)

  • # of staff trained to use racial equity toolkit.
  • # of improvements made to design or implementation of services/programs based upon racial equity toolkit results.
  • # of Departments/Divisions tracking service data disaggregated by race.

Legend

*   Started/starting

**  Near future

*** Will take more time

The City of Bloomington is committed to equitable and authentic community engagement.

Goals (What do we want?)

  1. Increase racial diversity of advisory boards and commissions.
  2. Design and deploy an authentic community engagement plan using the City's community engagement tools and resources.

Need (Why do we want it?)

Diversifying advisory boards and commissions helps to ensure the City hears from all its residents and encourages the exchange of different perspectives. Similarly, authentic community engagement requires the City of Bloomington to implement intentional strategies to engage communities most affected by racial inequities and injustice in ways that foster shared learning and understanding, and sharing of power. As a result, all residents will have an opportunity to be fully engaged at various stages in the public participation process.

Strategies (How do we get it?)

The City of Bloomington is committed to diversifying its advisory boards and commissions. The Council will not appoint commissioners based on their race, but will endeavor to have the composition of advisory boards and commissions mirror the diversity of the population we serve. Similarly, the City of Bloomington is committed to authentically engaging underrepresented racial/ethnic communities in the governing process.

To accomplish such the City will:

  • Design and implement proactive advisory board/commission recruitment strategies.*
  • Incorporate commitment to racial equity and inclusion in all advisory board/commission application cycles.*
  • Prioritize the early engagement of community members in policy and decision- making processes and endeavor to make the engagement meaningful and responsive to their needs and priorities.**
  • Track community engagement survey responses and event attendance by race.**
  • Share racial equity goals and strategies with the community and report outcomes and progress.**
  • External focused racial equity training/learning opportunities. ***

Performance Measures (How do we measure progress?)

  • % of BIPOC residents serving on Boards and Commissions.
  • # of Departments who design and implement community engagement plans utilizing the community engagement toolkit.

Legend

*   Started/starting

**  Near future

*** Will take more time