History of Social Justice and Racial Equity Initiatives
In June 2012, the Iowa City City Council established the Diversity Committee which was formulated to serve as an ad hoc council committee to review issues relating to diversity within the City organization. The committee reviewed the policies, practices and procedures within the Iowa City Police Department and the Transportation Services Department with the intent to provide a set of recommendations to the City Council on diversity-related matters. In March 2013, the Diversity Committee supplied the City Council and City staff with their recommendations. City staff developed an implementation form and reporting process designed to incorporate recommendations from both the Diversity Committee and City staff. The City Manager initiated a Diversity Task force and appointed an Equity Director to ensure the recommendations are implemented and in compliance with the goals of the City Council. The Council passed a resolution supporting various recommendations from City staff and the Diversity Committee.
Social Justice and Racial Equity Grant est. 2017
This grant opportunity is available to Iowa City-based organizations, both non and for profit, with the purpose of encouraging, empowering, and engaging social justice and racial equity initiatives through programs, activities, or services that help eliminate inequities in the Iowa City community. Programs that address one or more of the six priority service areas will receive preference: education, building community, housing, criminal justice, health, and employment. The Human Rights Commission reviews applications then forwards its recommendations to the City Council for review and approval. The City Council has approved $100,000 for FY2023, which will be split among the recipients.
Social Justice and Racial Equity Quarterly Updates from City Departments
The Social Justice and Racial Equity Quarterly Updates supplies the public with up-to-date information regarding City staff's work on social justice and racial equity.
Most current update:
Social Justice and Racial Equity 4th Quarter Update 2021
The Lens is a monthly newsletter that expands conversations on equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging. You can subscribe to the newsletter at icgov.org/subscribe.
Other City Information Related to Racial Equity & Social Justice
- Black Lives Matter Movement & Systemic Racism
- 2016 to 2020 Racial Equity Report Card
- 2020 Racial Equity Toolkits
- 2021 Location of Discrimination Complaints Filed with the Office of Equity & Human Rights
Government Alliance for Race and Equity
The City of Iowa City is a part of the Government Alliance for Race and Equity (GARE). The City joined in 2015, making it the second City in Iowa to become a member. GARE is a national network of government working to achieve racial equity and advance opportunities for all. Across the country, governmental jurisdictions are:
- Making a commitment to achieving racial equity
- Focusing on the power and influence of their own institutions, and
- Working in partnership with others
When this occurs, significant leverage and expansion opportunities emerge, setting the stage for the achievement of racial equity in our communities. More information about GARE is available at this link.