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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
City Council approved a resolution Monday night accepting a report and proposed guiding principles from the Mayor’s Initiative on Equity and Equality (MIEE). The appointed group was convened in March 2021 after City Council requested the development of community-wide guiding principles to help improve equitable access to opportunities, recognizing the inherent dignity, value and worth of each individual in the community.
This action was taken in large part in response to the action on May 25, 2020, by police officers in Minneapolis that caused the death of George Floyd. These actions were intolerable and caused Springfield city leaders to reflect upon the dignity of all persons, the value of life and especially the City’s responsibility as a local government. The City of Springfield is focusing on addressing the issues of racism and promotion of diversity, equity and inclusion, and this catalyst event compelled Springfield, like many communities around the country, to reflect and to commit to positive and needed change and to commit with both words and actions.
City Council previously passed Resolution 10510 on June 1, 2020, authored by City Manager Jason Gage, who acknowledged and highlighted the situation and recognized the moment as a catalyst for community action. Springfield Police Department took immediate action and published a website called “Where We Stand” detailing the policies, procedures and practices of our local police force.
The MIEE was tasked with completing its work within a year, considering the following five pillars of change: Dialogue and Understanding; Cultural Consciousness; Advocacy and Partnerships; Structural and Systemic Barriers; and Personal and Organizational Accountability. The MIEE group included individuals from different personal and professional lived experiences, different sectors of the community, and various cultural backgrounds.Members of the group included: Co-Chair Pastor Saehee Duran; Co-Chair Doug Neff; Rita Baron; Rabbi Barbara Block; Rev. Adrienne Denson-Ewell; Christian Lewis; Christa Moss; John Oke-Thomas; Mike Powers; Francine Pratt; Pastor Bob Roberts; Robin Robeson; Jeff Schrag; Carol Taylor; and Dr. Shurita Thomas-Tate.
“These guiding principles reflect the City’s commitment to improving inclusive and equitable access to opportunities, recognizing the inherent dignity, value, and worth of each individual in our community,” reads the opening statement to the MIEE report. The document shares a vision statement as well: Together, we will create and promote a community where differences are valued and celebrated and where everyone has the opportunity to prosper and contribute.
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For more information, contact Cora Scott, Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, at 417-380-3352 or [email protected].Link to reportFor detailed information about the Mayor’s Initiative on Equity and Equality, visit the website at https://www.springfieldmo.gov/5443/Mayors-Initiative-on-Equity-and-Equality.