California Governor Expanding Opportunity for All

Posted on September 14, 2022Comments Off on California Governor Expanding Opportunity for All

Governor Newsom Strengthens State’s Commitment to a California For All

SACRAMENTO (STL.News) Following his appointments to the Commission on the State of Hate today, Governor Gavin Newsom announced additional action to build on California’s leadership in expanding opportunity and justice for all.

“In California, we recognize that our incredible diversity is the foundation for our state’s strength, growth and success – and that confronting inequality is not just a moral imperative, but an economic one,” said Governor Newsom.  “Our state has made great strides in redressing historic wrongs and stubborn disparities, but we know that much work remains to tackle the barriers that hold back too many Californians and undermine our collective prosperity.  California won’t shy away from this challenge – with today’s action, our state is doubling down on the ongoing work to make the California Dream a reality for every one of us.”

“Policy changes and cultural shifts go hand-in-hand,” said First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom.  “As we work together toward a more just and equitable society, good policy – like today’s executive order – will go a long way to shifting workplace cultures, as well as the hearts and minds of the workforce.  For this reason, we are intentionally embedding equity into the mission and practices of state agencies and departments – a critical model for private sector employers as well.  Today’s order will advance our shared goal of providing women, people of color, the LGBTQ community, people with disabilities, and other marginalized communities what they need at work to grow and thrive in and out of the workplace.”

Executive Order

Governor Newsom today signed an executive order directing state agencies and departments to take additional actions to embed equity analysis and considerations in their mission, policies and practices.  This action will help expand opportunity for all by addressing disparities for historically underserved and marginalized communities.  Addressing unequal circumstances helps drive equal outcomes so all Californians have the chance to reach their full potential and lead healthy and rewarding lives, and all California communities can thrive and prosper.

Under the order, state agencies and departments are directed to embed policies and practices in their strategic plans in order to further advance equity and opportunity and address disparities in access and outcomes.  As part of these efforts, agencies and departments will incorporate more inclusive public engagement and data analysis to better serve all Californians.

In addition, the order helps protect communities against hate violence and discrimination through accelerated actions, supports equitable investment of federal infrastructure funding, promotes a more inclusive and diverse state workforce, and encourages contracting opportunities for California businesses in disadvantaged regions and communities.  Under the order, the California Health and Human Services Agency and Government Operations Agency will also develop recommendations to improve language and communications access to state government services and programs.

Racial Equity Commission

The executive order also establishes the state’s first Racial Equity Commission.  The Commission, developed with Senator Dr. Richard Pan and the racial equity organizations that sponsored SB 17, will produce a Racial Equity Framework consisting of resources and tools to promote racial equity and address structural racism.  More broadly, the Commission will recommend tools, methodologies and opportunities to advance racial equity, and will be available to provide direct assistance to state agencies in reviewing and updating policies and practices upon request.

“We applaud the Governor’s Executive Order on Equity today.  It is abundantly clear that we must center racial equity in our government’s policies and practices to fully deliver on the hope of a CA for all.  As advocates who worked on Senate Bill 17 to create the Racial Equity Commission under the authorship of Senator Pan, we value this important action taken by the Administration, which makes strides in addressing racial disparities in the state,” said leaders from Advancement Project California, the Community Coalition, the Greenlining Institute, NextGen California and SEIU California.

A copy of the executive order can be found here.

Governor Newsom recently appointed California’s first State Chief Equity Officer at the Government Operations Agency for leadership as it relates to state operations, procurement, information technology and human resources.  The Governor has taken action to embed equity within the state budget process led by the Department of Finance.  Departments and agencies are now required to analyze equity considerations when making requests for new resources, including assessments of how proposed changes address inequities.

Legislation

Governor Newsom today also announced that he has signed several bills focused on advancing equity and tackling disparities:

  • AB 316 by Assemblymember Jim Cooper (D-Elk Grove) requires CalHR to prepare a report on gender and ethnicity pay equity in certain classifications where there is an underrepresentation of women and minorities.
  • AB 1604 by Assemblymember Chris Holden (D-Pasadena) will provide workers with greater opportunity to move upward within state service through improvements and best practices in processes for hiring, recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce.
  • AB 1957 by Assemblymember Lori D. Wilson (D-Suisun City) will update the information that the Department of Developmental Services and regional centers are required to compile and report on the purchase of services for individuals with developmental disabilities to better identify disparities in race, ethnicity and language.
  • AB 2448 by Assemblymember Philip Ting (D-San Francisco) directs the state’s Civil Rights Department to create a pilot program that recognizes businesses for creating safe and welcoming environments for customers free from discrimination and harassment.
  • AB 2873 by Assemblymember Reginald Byron Jones-Sawyer, Sr. (D-Los Angeles) supports supplier diversity in the affordable housing industry by requiring project developers that receive Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to report on their contractor and supplier demographic data, including use of women, minority, disabled veteran and LGBT businesses.
  • SB 1058 by Senator María Elena Durazo (D-Los Angeles) requires the Employment Development Department to collect demographic data for individuals participating in the State Disability Insurance and Paid Family Leave programs to inform outreach efforts.  This includes race and ethnicity data and sexual orientation and gender identity data.
  • SB 1161 by Senator Dave Min (D-Irvine) is sponsored by Stop AAPI Hate to help improve public transit ridership safety.  The bill requires the Mineta Transportation Institute to develop a survey on harassment of passengers to inform public transit safety efforts.

Read more news related to California:

  1. California Governor Newsom Signs Legislation
  2. California Governor Newsom Announces Appointments
  3. California Governor on Legislature’s Passage of Bill

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