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Advancing equity at Metro

About Metro    Equity

Metro is committed to advancing equity across the agency and creating a vibrant and sustainable region for all.

What's new?

Metro appointed 13 representatives to serve on the Equity Strategy Advisory Committee. Members of the committee are leaders from diverse backgrounds including business, community, philanthropic and public sectors that will help guide the Equity Strategy Program.

Learn more about the committee

In 2010, the Metro Council adopted equity as one of the region’s six desired outcomes and in 2012 initiated the development of an organizing framework to help Metro consistently incorporate equity into policy and decision-making. To be successful in this effort, any strategy that Metro considers needs to have community support that evolves through sustained and committed partnership.

Given the scale of effort needed to strategically move Metro’s equity work forward, staff designed a three-phase approach to developing an equity framework for Metro.

Phase 1 | Equity Inventory Report

The Equity Inventory Report completed in 2012, provides a snapshot of how Metro intentionally incorporates equity considerations into agency activities.

The report identified four areas for improvement:

  • Lack of strategic guidance to support intentional efforts to advance equity
  • Duplication of effort in the area of equity
  • Inconsistency of approach to equity considerations
  • Lack of capacity throughout the agency to advance regional outcome

Phase 2 | Define a strategy

Region’s six desired outcomes

  • Vibrant communities
  • Economic prosperity
  • Safe and reliable transportation
  • Leadership on climate change
  • Clean air and water
  • Equity

Learn more about the region's six desired outcomes. Go

The strategy will build on understanding community needs to explicitly define how the agency will work to advance equity. This will be accomplished by first understanding how communities experience the region’s outcomes today through the development of an Equity Baseline. 

After better understanding how different communities and populations experience these outcomes, Metro will work to evaluate the agency’s role in addressing disparities. Metro may identify inequities or disparities that are outside of the agency’s authority.  In some cases, these issues may fall outside the scope of this strategy. In others, Metro may look for opportunities for the agency to advance equity within the region’s outcomes.

This effort will also focus on the development of new partnerships with underserved communities. These partnerships are critical to ensuring that Metro’s strategy addresses the needs of underserved communities across the region.

The Equity Strategy Program will:

  • Establish an evidence-based decision making process that ensures meaningful engagement from communities most impacted by disproportionate burdens.
  • Co-create internal and external capacity to understand Metro’s role in advancing equity across the region’s desired outcomes.
  • Identify the institutional systems that stand in the way of equitable outcomes, as well as the institutional systems that provide opportunities to support equitable outcomes, including the tools needed to implement equitable practices throughout the agency.
  • Define and implement Metro’s agency-specific equity strategy that is actionable and measurable.

Equity strategy program timeline

Program outcomes 

  1. Strengthen and build new and existing partnerships
  2. Increase external knowledge base around Metro’s roles and responsibilities and support capacity building for partners to engage with Metro
  3. Build internal capacity around equity
  4. Build on existing regional and national equity measurement efforts to create a strong foundation for Metro’s Equity Strategy Program

Phase 3 | Strategy implementation

Once an equity strategy is chosen, implementing this strategy will ensure that Metro leadership and staff consistently consider equity at the beginning phase of program, policy and project development, making sure that equity considerations become actionable by staff and measurable during evaluation.    

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Diversity at Metro

Learn about diversity at Metro and the plan that was developed as a blueprint to uphold Metro's organizational value of respect and to reflect understanding of the growing diversity of the region we serve.

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