FR=EE has five workgroups committed to developing solutions that reduce/eliminate racial disparities in the areas of housing, health, education, employment and criminal justice.
Housing Workgroup: Currently convening community members for focus groups aimed at identifying pressing housing/neighborhood issues and developing solutions.
Health Disparities Workgroup: Working on the development of solutions that connect African American and Latino job seekers to higher paying jobs within the medical field.
Education Workgroup: Working on an anti-racist/culturally responsive professional development model and curriculum that goes beyond diversity training, to be used with all RCSD staff.
Employment Workgroup: Working on the development of solutions that connect African American and Latino job seekers with employment based on skills, rather than having a diploma or GED.
Criminal Justice Workgroup: Working on reducing racial disparities in rates of detention and sentencing. Researching effectiveness of law enforcement diversion programs and how they can be successfully implemented in Rochester.
Facing Race, Embracing Equity Racial Equity Community Agenda
Developed by Facing Race, Embracing Equity’s five action and change workgroups, the Racial Equity Community Agenda includes 20 strategic and measurable goals. Solutions to these goals, which can be implemented in the next three to five years, are intended to break down barriers caused by structural racism in the areas of housing, health disparities, jobs and economic opportunities, education, and criminal justice.
Race and Housing
- Achieve a societal structure in which it is possible for people to live where they prefer to live.
- Improve housing quality, neighborhood conditions, and related quality of life issues so that targeted neighborhoods, where a majority of the residents are people of color, become desirable places to live.
Race and Health Disparities
- Ensure that programs aimed at preparing health professionals address how racism and implicit bias contribute to racial health disparities.
- Ensure city residents receive training in health advocacy, paying special attention to how racism and implicit bias contribute to racial health disparities.
- Expand and strengthen opportunities for people of color to reach higher level/licensed healthcare positions.
Race and Jobs and Economic Opportunities
- Significantly increase the number of African-American and Hispanic-owned firms and businesses, and with existing African-American and Hispanic-owned firms, accelerate overall employment.
- Increase African-American and Hispanic inclusion in the entire employment experience, including hiring and retention.
- Connect African-American and Hispanic job seekers directly to sustainable living wage employment, based on having job-specific skills.
Race and Education
- Create socioeconomic, political, and cultural conditions that guarantee equitable opportunities for all Rochester City School District students to develop reading, writing, and math skills at or above grade level.
- Utilize student centered, anti-racist instruction to empower student-voice, and to counter internalized oppression and supremacy produced by dominant Eurocentric narratives.
- The Rochester City School District will increase the number of qualified, competent, and preferably race/class-conscious educators of color.
- In partnership with FR=EE’s Race and Education Workgroup, the school district will develop comprehensive, ongoing, mandatory, anti-racist, culturally responsive professional development for all district employees.
- Policies will be created and adhered to, which provide authentic opportunities for parents, guardians, and caretakers to participate equitably in all major decision making processes at the school and central office levels
- Increase the number of schools that serve as the center of activity for their neighborhoods (“anchors”) providing opportunities for parents to connect and build coalitions and to learn how to access available resources for personal and community enhancement.
Race and Juvenile/Criminal Justice
- Significantly reduce racial disparities in suspensions and expulsions in the Rochester City School District, fostering shared accountability among students, parents, teachers, and the community.
- In City and County courts, significantly reduce racial disparities in rates of detention and incarceration of people of color.
- Significantly reduce crime and build relationships with law enforcement across racial and multiple diverse groups in the Greater Rochester community.
- Significantly increase the availability of mental health, behavioral health, and emotional wellness services for youth.
- Foster life skills acquisition and reduce crime and re-incarceration rates by significantly improving access to community-based juvenile reentry services for people of color, pre and post-incarceration.
- Change state laws related to adult trial age, marijuana possession, and mandatory sentencing that result in significant disparities in arrest rate and incarceration.