Manchester Declares Racism a Public Health Crisis

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On Tuesday, July 7th,The Board of Directors unanimously voted 9-0 to declare racism a public health crisis in Manchester.

“This bold action is an important step in Manchester’s ongoing efforts to address structural racism and live up to our vision of being a national model for what it means to be a truly welcoming,diverse, inclusive, and thriving American community”, said Mayor Jay Moran. “I want to thank Director Pamela Floyd-Cranford and the community groups that helped lead this effort, as well as all of my fellow members of the Board of Directors who unanimously supported this resolution.”

The resolution states the Board of Directors of the Town Manchester “asserts that racism is a public health crisis affecting our town and all of Connecticut” and resolves that the Town of Manchester will:

  • Establish itself as an equity and justice-oriented organization, by continuing to identify specific activities to enhance diversity and to ensure anti-racism principles across our leadership, staffing, and contracting.
  • Promote equity through all approved policies and enhance educational efforts aimed at understanding, addressing and dismantling racism and how it affects the delivery of human and social services, economic development and public safety.
  • Improve the quality of the data Manchester collects and analyzes by using qualitative and quantitative data to assess inequities in impact and to enable continuous improvement.
  • Continue to advocate locally for relevant policies that improve health outcomes in communities of color, and support local, state, regional, and federal initiatives that advance efforts to dismantle systemic racism.
  • Seek to form alliances and partnerships with organizations that are confronting racism and encourage other local, state, regional, and national entities to recognize racism as a public health crisis.
  • Support community efforts to amplify issues of racism and engage actively and authentically with communities of color.
  • Identify clear goals and objectives, and require periodic reports from town departments, boards,and commissions to assess progress and capitalize on opportunities to further advance racial equity.

 

“This is an action plan that falls in line with what Manchester has already begun, said Director Pamela Floyd-Cranford. “I want to make it very clear this is not merely some gesture to check a box to make everybody feel good. This is the right thing to do for a town like Manchester.”

Director Ellen Dougan stated that“This important step shows our Town is unified when it comes to condemning racism, addressing it locally, and embracing the diversity that makes Manchester such a great community.”

Manchester now joins neighboring towns Windsor, Hartford, Bloomfield, West Hartford and New Britain who have passed similar resolutions.

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