The Equity Office works across all City departments and with major institutions, non-profits, and other community organizations working in the Austin to build capacity and leadership in working from a racial equity lens. This includes both our multiple training offerings, and one-on-one equity consultations. Annually the Office trains more than 500 people, and consults on more than 600 different programs, services, policies brought to us both by City staff and community concerns. If you are a staff member with the City or other major institution and are seeking an equity consultation or workshop, please complete this form and staff will get in touch.
The Equity Office offers several grant programs intended to help grassroots and local community organizations access funding. These programs include the Equity Mini-Grant Fund, whose applications open annually for awards ranging from $10,000 to $20,000 and support work to address quality of life disparities. We have since expanded our programs to include the Reentry Services Grant meant to transform outcomes for formerly incarcerated people. There are two categories: The Hub Award, which provides $200,000 for those 501(c)3 non-profits who provide wrap-around services to formerly incarcerated individuals, and the Spoke Award, which provides $50,000 to entities providing direct services to formerly incarcerated individuals as they 'reenter' society. There are also additional topic or issue focused grant openings, such as the Reimagining Public Safety Grants, and potential for future grant openings supporting work for the immigrant and refugee populations.
In order to be informed about all grant openings, the best way is to sign up to receive Equity Action Team notifications.
Equity Assessment Process
The Equity Assessment Process is the core of our work. Community organized for the creation of an equity assessment tool, and City Council created the Equity Office to build and administer it. This Equity Assessment Tool is in the process of being implemented with all 40+ City departments and offices. You can see what we have done so far via this Dashboard, as well as this story page.
The full process encompasses many steps, and involves a lot of individual support and development of department staff leading its completion. If you would like more information on how we lead this work, we encourage you to reach out and someone from the Office will meet and answer any questions.