Working for Racial Equity in SDOT

The City’s Race and Social Justice Initiative (RSJI) is a citywide effort to end institutionalized racism and race-based disparities in City government. In the month of February, SDOT is sharing stories of some of the projects and programs we are working on to achieve racial equity in our community.

Every year, SDOT’s RSJI Change Team participates in a retreat to kick off the year ahead. New members are welcomed, participants get additional training and the department’s RSJI work plan is fine tuned.  The Change Team consists of 15 dedicated employees who work together to achieve workforce equity and help improve transportation access for everyone. Members are selected through an annual application process from a cross-section of the department including office and field employees.

Ahmed, SDOT's Change Team chair, during a lunch and learn recruiting event

 

The Seattle community is at the heart of what we do and one of the areas we are focusing on in 2012 is “Building Healthy Communities” to provide equitable delivery of transportation services.  Two programs that support safe and healthy travel options in our neighborhoods are the projects included in the pedestrian lighting and stairway rehabilitation programs. This year, SDOT is evaluating the projects in these programs implemented from 2009 to 2012 to see what percentage of funding over the past four years was used in census blocks with over 48 percent populations of people of color. The results will inform program goals set for 2013 to 2016.  The Change Team will also be looking at other SDOT programs and how the New Street Tree ordinance will be implemented.

We look forward to advancing opportunity and achieving equity in 2012!