Background

The Erie Racial Justice Policy Initiative is a Better Together Council-sponsored policy action project facilitated by the Jefferson Education Society that engages with multiple stakeholders in the City of Erie to identify and implement local public policy reforms that address the most pressing racial justice opportunities within the City of Erie. The belief is that by working together, we can achieve policy wins.

What is racial justice? Racial justice is the systematic fair treatment of people of all races that results in equitable opportunities and outcomes for everyone. All people are able to achieve their full potential in life, regardless of race, ethnicity or the community in which they live.

What is racial justice policy work?  The racial justice public policy work of this initiative is work that specifically proposes and implements public policy to address racial justice challenges that can be solved at the local level. 

Although racial justice work can occur at a variety of levels of action, we are focused on policy changes that can be made within the City of Erie.

Cities across the country are in various stages of addressing racial justice and the approaches to policy changes are diverse.

Some cities have developed policy alongside community groups to eliminate fees, waive debt, and change some operating procedures that put disproportionate financial pressure on poor and low-income families and on communities of color. Some examples are waiving traffic fines en lieu of community service, suspending accrued library fines, eliminating the charges for calls to family when being detained in a county jail, and ensuring that individuals do not lose their driver’s licenses because of the inability to pay traffic fines.

Other cities have  undertaken assessments of opportunities for advancing racial equity that have resulted in city government-specific equitable workforce recruitment, procurement, and service delivery goals and policies.

Overall, cities across the country are demonstrating that it is possible to have significant impact on racial justice through concerted public policy action at the local level.

Questionnaire for Potential Partners

We are in the process of identifying what local racial justice public policy work is already underway in the City of Erie and are seeking partners for this initiative. The Erie Racial Justice Policy Initiative is in a position to provide modest funding for 12 partners over the next year. We invite you to take this short survey so that we can better understand what efforts your organization is already involved in and so that we can contact your group to participate in the Racial Justice Initiative. If your organization or group is not selected to participate in this initial round, we will keep everyone updated on other opportunities to be involved. To be considered, please reply by April 30, 2021. Thank you!


 

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* 1. What is the name of your group or organization?

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* 2. Is racial justice important to the work that your group or organization does?

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* 3. Often, racial justice work intersects with other policy work. What are the key areas of focus for your group or organization? (for example, education, environmental justice, etc) (Check all that apply)

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* 4. What are the goals of your group or organization? (Check all that apply)

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* 5. What public policies are your group or organization working to advance in the City of Erie?

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* 6. What are the main ways your group or organization approaches policy reform in the City of Erie? (Check all that apply)

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* 7. What has been the biggest obstacle to achieving policy change in the City of Erie for your group?

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* 8. What is the progress your group or organization has made in achieving its public policy goals for Erie?

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* 9. Do you collect data on the impact of your group or organization’s work?

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* 10. If yes, what data do you collect?

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* 11. Who is the contact person for your racial justice work?

OPTIONAL QUESTIONS

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* 12. How would you identify your group or organization?

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* 13. Does your group or organization have paid staff?

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* 14. What is your group or organization's annual budget?

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* 15. What are your current sources of funding? (Check all that apply)

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* 16. How does your audience engage with your group or organization? (Check all that apply)

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* 17. What are the demographics of your group or organization? (Check all that apply)

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* 18. Does your group or organization have a website or social media handle?

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* 19. We would appreciate it if you could please provide your web address or social media handle here.

Thank you!
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