Hiring Equity: Can MnDOT End 20 Years of Failure to Meet Hiring Goals for People of Color
The Alliance for Metropolitan Stability is excited to release the most recent paper in our Race and Regionalism series - "Hiring Equity: Can MnDOT End 20 years of Failure to Meet Hiring Goals for People of Color?" This paper addresses the institutional and cultural changes that will be necessary to end employment disparities in the Twin Cities region.
The Alliance's Race and Regionalism series explores a history of public policymaking that favored, either intentionally or as a byproduct of poor decision-making, the needs of white people over those of people of color and indigenous people. An examination of these policies demonstrates how racial discrimination has shaped and defined our region.
Sustainable Communities in the Twin Cities: How Community Groups Are Working with Government to Transform Transitway Development
In late 2010, Russ Adams, Margaret Kaplan and Repa Mekha each received a phone call at their offices. On the other end of the line was a staff member from the Metropolitan Council, the Twin Cities’ metropolitan planning organization, asking their organizations to consider taking a leadership role in a new project.
The council was working with other government, philanthropic and large nonprofit partners to develop a Sustainable Communities Initiative application to HUD. The initiative would promote sustainable, vibrant and healthy communities in the Twin Cities region, using major transitway expansion as a development focus. The agency wanted Adams, Kaplan and Mekha to form a Community Engagement Team to help include underrepresented communities in the challenging process of transitway planning.
Read the rest of the CET story!
2011 Annual Report
Thank you for partnering with the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability in 2011. Together, we made big strides in bringing about our vision for an equitable, inclusive and sustainable region that benefits everyone.
Corporate Subsidies: How Economic Development Policies Contribute to Racial Disparities
Over the next year, the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability will release a series of Race and Regionalism papers that will explore a history of public policymaking that favored, either intentionally or as a byproduce of poor decision-making the needs of white people over those of people of color and indigenous people. This paper shows how corporate subsidies and economic policies, justified in the name of spurring job creation, have instead contributed to racial disparities in teh region. It also discusses how designing our economic policies with race in mind can provide a double bottom line by simultaneously catalyzing job growth and closing the employment gap.
Twin Cities 2050: Advancing an Equity Agenda for the Twin Cities region
Check out this recap of last week's Twin Cities 2050 roundtable, where community, government and business leaders from the Twin Cities region came together to discuss the largely untapped potential living within our region’s communities of color and how it can be harnessed to fuel our region’s economic growth.
How A Stadium Equity Plan Was Created: The Inside Story
When talk of a new Vikings stadium began in early 2012, HIRE Minnesota began listening with interest. Our coalition members had different opinions on whether the stadium should be built, but we all shared one core value: that major public investments that create jobs need to benefit everyone in our state. As the debate unfolded, HIRE Minnesota noticed that there was lots of talk about job creation, but no talk about who would get those jobs. We set out to change that.
The Harrison Neighborhood: How a Community Becomes Marginalized
Over the next year, the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability will release a series of Race and Regionalism papersth at will explore a history of public policymaking that favored, either intentionally or as a byproduct of poor decision-making, the needs of white people over those of people of color and indigenous people. This paper shows how a series of policy decisions have created systemic barriers to opportunity for people of color in the Harrison neighborhood of North Minneapolis.
The G.I. Bill: America’s Largest Affirmative Action Program
Over the next year, the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability will share a series of stories that explores a history of public policymaking that favored, either intentionally or as a byproduct of poor decision making, the needs of white people over those of people of color and indigenous people. This first paper looks at the long-term effects of the post-WWII G.I. Bill and demonstrates how even race-neutral policies, when poorly planned or implemented, can have drastic and persistent negative effects on people of color.
Stops for Us: Organizing for Equity Along the Central Corridor
When the Central Corridor light rail begins its service connecting St. Paul and Minneapolis in 2014, it will carry more than the thousands of riders who will use it daily. The line will also carry with it a powerful story about how engaged residents and community-based organizations can, and must play a central role in the planning and development of major infrastructure investments.
Telling a New Story about Disparities
“How do we widen the messaging frame so that we are inclusive, without making it so wide that there is no focus?”
Twin Cities Regional Transitway Decision-Making Overview
Who has authority over transitway planning in the Twin Cities? This flow chart depicts the complex and often interrelated authorities who play a role in transitway planning in our region.
Status of Corridors of Opportunity Transitways
The Corridors of Opportunity project is creating sustainable, vibrant and healthy communities in the Twin Cities, using seven existing and planned transitways as a development focus. This map shows the seven Corridors of Opportunity, with a high-level summary of what planning stage each transitway is currently in.
Community Engagement Opportunities for Transitway Development
How does a new transitway get planned? The complex steps of planning, design and public input can be overwhelming. This simple chart shows the major planning steps each new transitway must go through, and which government agencies have authority over those processes.
2010 Annual Report
Thank you for being a partner with the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability this year. Together, we made big strides in transforming our region toward our vision for an equitable, inclusive and sustainable region that benefits everyone. The victories you will read about in this report are transforming the way that our region functions.
We are showing that it is possible to intentionally build a region free of racial and economic injustice, so that everyone can have access to transportation choices, affordable housing, a healthy environment and employment opportunities.
As we continue to demonstrate that the choices we make affect the entire region – because we are all directly connected and interdependent – we will realize the equitable region that we all hope for.
Met Council Data does not match public contractor reports
HIRE Minnesota is a coalition of community organizations that works to ensure our public investments create family-sustaining employment opportunities for low-income people and people of color.
One of our projects is holding contractors on public infrastructure projects accountable to their hiring goals for women and people of color. HIRE Minnesota is committed to this issue because hundreds of millions of dollars are spent on public infrastructure projects each year in our state, creating hundreds of jobs, yet contractors rarely meet their hiring goals. It is vital to our communities that the workforce of state-funded infrastructure projects reflect diversity of our communities.
The 2011 Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant Guide: How to Incorporate Equity into your Grant Application
Last year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), launched an unprecedented new program to help regions plan for sustainability.
This guide provided by PolicyLink offers information on how regions can incorporate social equity into their applications for the second round of funding for sustainable communities grants. It was written for local governments, metropolitan planning organizations, nonprofits, foundations, and educational institutions who are interested in developing competitive grant applications.
Local and national leaders envision equitable transitway development in the Twin Cities region
“What does an inclusive and sustainable path to economic growth look like?”
That was the framing question posed by Nexus Community Partners Executive Director Repa Mekha to more than 250 people who attended a public forum on Anchoring Equity to Achieve Sustainable Regional Development Outcomes last week.
Governor Dayton's Response to Black Economic Summit
Governor Dayton has issued responses to the recommendations made by HIRE Minnesota and other organizations and community members at the Black Economic Summit in North Minneapolis. We appreciate the timeliness of the governor's response and that he is willing to partner with us in addressing these important issues. We look forward to continuing to work with the governor in achieving actual positive outcomes in addressing the economic issues facing people of color in Minnesota.
MnDOT: Disadvantaged Business Enterprise & Workforce Collaborative Report to the Legislature
Representing HIRE Minnesota, the Alliance participated in the collaborative process that resulted in this report to the state Legislature on how to improve MnDOT's hiring and contracting outcomes for women and people of color.
OAP: Racial Equity Policy Brief on Jobs and Economic Development
The Organizing Apprenticeship Project released this policy brief this week that details 14 recommendations for how to reduce Minnesota's racial disparities while creating jobs and boosting economic development. HIRE Minnesota was one of the contributors and co-releasers of the report.
Twin Cities Sustainable Communities Grant Community Engagement Team Presentation
The Twin Cities region was recently awarded a grant from the HUD Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant program.
The Alliance, Nexus Community Partners and the Minnesota Center for Neighborhood Organizing were selected to lead a Community Engagement Team to to ensure communities along emerging transitways have a voice and a strong role in planning for the future of their neighborhoods.
This presentation provides background on the initiative and early planning for the grant's community engagement efforts.
2009 Annual Report
Read about the Alliance's 2009 victories for racial, economic and environmental justice in the 2009 annual report!
Working Twice as Hard: African Americans and the American Labor Market
Dr. Algernon Austin of the Economic Policy Institute made this presentation at the Alliance's Moving Minnesota from Worst to Best on Hiring Equity event. It provides a statistical picture of the hiring and unemployment disparities in the Twin Cities and nationally.
Uneven Pain - Unemployment by Metropolitan Area and Race
The Economic Policy Institute recently released this study, which revealed that the Twin Cities has one of the worst racial gaps in unemployment in the nation. An excerpt:
Looking at the unemployment ratios with whites for Hispanics and African Americans in Tables 3 and 4, the Minneapolis
Evaluating Our Transportation Future: How Federal Spending Influences Local Transportation Planning and What Communities Can Do About It
Right now is a critical moment for local communities to understand how federal transit project evaluation criteria affect decisions that will happen right in our own backyards.
A recent announcement from the Federal Transit Administration states that the agency will now take livability criteria into consideration when evaluating projects for federal funding. They will also “initiate a separate rulemaking process, inviting public comment on ways to appropriately measure all the benefits that result from such (transit) investments.” This means that communities planning for major future public transportation will be able to provide input into how those projects will be evaluated by the federal government.
Furthermore, by 2011, Congress is expected to pass the next six-year federal surface transportation bill to guide our nation’s transportation spending. This bill will have tremendous implications for how new transitways and roads are designed and constructed in the Twin Cities and around the country.
With so many communities in Minnesota – from North Minneapolis to the western suburbs, and from the Central Corridor
Transportation Stimulus in Minnesota: Increasing Equity or Exacerbating Disparities?
When it passed in February 2009, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) was a beacon of hope for many low-income communities and communities of color. An important guiding principle for ARRA states that funds should be used to assist those most impacted by the recession. Communities of color, which have historically borne the greatest unemployment burden, saw the stimulus bill as an opportunity to challenge the status quo in how public investments are allocated to communities around our nation.
So how have we done so far? With nearly a year of implementation behind us, people are raising questions about how much of the stimulus funding actually reached communities of color. There has been a particular interest in how stimulus funds were spent on infrastructure projects – rebuilding our nation’s roads, bridges and transit systems. This is because a significant portion of the stimulus funding went to those projects, but also because infrastructure projects are relatively high paying and accessible to low-income people and people of color.
In this paper, we examine how stimulus funds were spent on transportation infrastructure investments in Minnesota. Did people of color receive their fair share of transportation stimulus funding? Or did our state fall short in meeting the recovery act’s goal to benefit the people most impacted by the recession?
2008 Annual Report
The Alliance's 2008 annual report is now available!
15 years Organizing Together for Justice
The Alliance is celebrating our 15th anniversary in 2009. Read about our accomplishments in our first 15 years and check out the winning photographs in our in/stability photo competition.
Measuring the Racial Impacts of Public Policy
Terry Keleher of the Applied Research Center made this presentation at the Alliance's 2009 Regional Equity Series event on Measuring the Racial Impacts of Public Policies.
The Benefits of Public Transportation
Transportation is the lifeblood of a nation’s economy, moving and connecting people, goods and services. For many Americans, talk of our transportation system may bring to mind our expansive highway system, undoubtedly the largest in the world. But increasingly, studies are showing that Americans want alternatives to driving to their destinations.
Transportation Stimulus in Minnesota
Did Minnesota use the federal stimulus to create jobs, catch up on needed repair, and expand transportation choices for everyone? This report produced by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, Transit for Livable Communities and 1,000 Friends of Minnesota analyzes transportation stimulus spending in Minnesota.
The Alliance’s Organizer Roundtable on June 17, 2009, brought Twin Cities organizers together to discuss campaign messaging and its importance in organizing. This roundtable provided an opportunity for organizers to join in a discussion about messaging practices in organizing campaigns, and to ask questions of regional leaders in organizing communications.
The Power of a Story
Earlier this month, the Alliance brought organizers together from around the metropolitan region to learn techniques to make storytelling a more effective part of their organizing strategy. This Organizer Roundtable featured Loren Niemi of the Public Policy Project presenting “The Power of a Story.” Niemi says:
With 40 years of organizing and 30 plus years of having identified myself as a storyteller, I understand why Hollywood Producer Peter Guber says in Harvard Business Review “Storytelling ... is one of the most powerful tools for achieving astonishing results. It is action oriented – a force for turning dreams into goals and then into results.”
Stories are fundamental to the organizer’s role in helping individuals and communities to identify their dreams, hopes, fears and experience to harness them in service of building identity, common ground and change. The question is not whether stories have a role in your work but how can you be intentional and culturally responsive about the stories you tell. A good story touches the heart, engages the imagination and invites participation in arriving at “happily ever after.” It makes the complex easier to understand by anchoring in our human experience. It gives voice to the lives of those most impacted by issues. It can create powerful metaphors that frame our understanding of challenges and solutions.
How do you create powerful advocacy stories? First you listen. Then you tell and retell what you heard to distill the essence of the story. You test it with a variety of audiences. You repeat the process again recognizing that it is the embodiment of what Paul Costello says: “We story our lives into meaning and that meaning shapes our values and actions.”
Organizer Roundtable Resource: The Role of Research in Effective Campaign Strategy
The Alliance for Metropolitan Stability held an Organizer Roundtable on April 22, 2009, that brought Twin Cities organizers together to discuss the Role of Research in Effective Campaign Strategy. This roundtable provided an opportunity for organizers to discuss the role research can play in community campaigns, and to ask questions of local research experts.
Organizer Roundtable Resource: Education for Liberation - The Paulo Freire Methodology
The Alliance's recent Organizer Roundtable featured Victor Cole of Twin Cities Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed, who presented on a variety of popular education methods. This document outlines the historical roots of popular education, derived from the teachings of Paulo Freire.
Organizer Roundtable Resource: The Importance of Organizing in Community Development
The Alliance for Metropolitan Stability held an Organizer Roundtable on March 11, 2009, that brought together Twin Cities’ organizers to discuss the Importance of Organizing in Community Development. This roundtable provided an opportunity to discuss the role organizing plays in community development efforts – and to share challenges faced and successful approaches to use when organizing in a community development setting.
Organizer Roundtable Resource: The Intersection Between Electoral and Issue Organizing
The Alliance for Metropolitan Stability held an Organizer Roundtable on February 11, 2009, that brought Twin Cities organizers together to discuss the Intersection of Electoral and Issue Organizing. This roundtable was an opportunity for organizers to share their recent successes in electoral organizing – and to discuss how to capture that energy in future issue-based campaigns.
Community Benefits Agreements: Growing a Movement in Minnesota
The Alliance for Metropolitan Stability recently released this report on community benefits agreements to further develop local understanding of the CBA's potential to yield significant, community-desired results from large-scale redevelopments and other projects. More and more organizations and coalitions are turning to the CBA model to produce meaningful — and, perhaps more importantly, enforceable — outcomes for low-income people and communities of color.
Recommendations for the Wireless Minneapolis Community Benefits Agreement
The Digital Inclusion Coalition was hosted by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability and comprised of organizations and individuals concerned about creating opportunities for low-income people and people of color to gain access to and training on computers and the Internet.
The group came together as the city of Minneapolis issued an RFP for a private company to run its citywide Wi-Fi network. The coalition released Recommendations for the Wireless Minneapolis Community Benefits Agreement, which advocated for the city to demand benefits for taxpayers in the vendor contract.
Providing solutions to the digital divide, the report shows how to ensure that all are represented when a city offers universal wireless internet service. Many of these recommendations were adopted in the final contract between the city and US Internet, providing more than $11 million for digital inclusion efforts in Minneapolis and many other benefits.
Winter 2012 Common Ground
The winter 2012 of the Common Ground tells powerful stories about our current issues and campaigns. It lifts up the work of our partner groups and shows how, together, we are creating opportunities to advance regional equity in the Twin Cities.
Organizer Roundtable: Coalition Organizing for Affordable Housing Wins
The most transformative legislative victories aren't usually won by individual organizations. Successful legislative campaigns are often rooted in cross-organization and geographically disparate coalitions. The Homes for All campaign is an example of such a coalition; it procured $37.5 million to build, preserve and support affording housing in Minnesota in 2012. In February, organizers from ...