King County Council embraces social justice goals

May 25, 2012

By Staff

NEW — 6 a.m. May 25, 2012

King County Council members approved a plan Monday to extend outreach to underserved communities.

The council endorsed a work plan for the county Equity and Social Justice Initiative, a program to reduce economic, racial and social disparities.

“The idea behind the Equity and Social Justice Initiative was to focus on the role that our government should play in addressing disparities created by race, class, gender, sexual orientation, health, geographic location and land-use policies,” council Chairman Larry Gossett and prime sponsor said in a statement.

Launched in 2008, the Equity and Social Justice Initiative is meant to eliminate long-standing and persistent inequities and social injustices within King County by applying principles of equity and social justice in county decisions and policies.

“This work will help monitor that King County can offer equal opportunities for all throughout the many services and agencies across the county,” Councilwoman Kathy Lambert, the Issaquah representative, said in a statement. “The access to opportunity for everyone, regardless of individual challenges or location, is what makes America great.”

In October 2010, the council adopted legislation on equity to create a team to support the application of equity and social justice practices. The inter-branch team collects work plans from all departments and agencies in county government.

“I am pleased to support the Equity and Social Justice Initiative,” Issaquah-area Councilman Reagan Dunn said in a statement. “Implementing this working plan ensures the policies and programs of this county will better serve all of our residents.”

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