New office: Mayor seeks to add Anchorage Office of Equity and Justice - Must Read Alaska
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Wednesday, August 5, 2020
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New office: Mayor seeks to add Anchorage Office of Equity and Justice

Equity and Justice are the vogue terms for the social justice warrior sector. The Anchorage Assembly will on Tuesday take up an ordinance establishing the Office of Equity and Justice in the Office of the Mayor of Anchorage.

The move would also create a “chief equity officer,” who would be appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the Assembly, and who would be responsible for developing, supporting, and implementing the municipality’s equity agenda.

The chief equity officer would be paid at a range of 23E. A Range 23 in the State of Alaska is a deputy director level salary, and an E step is generally a six-year employee.

Chief Equity Officer’s responsibilities, as described by the ordinance will include these deliverables:

  • Co-lead Welcoming Anchorage initiative and ensure ongoing updates and implementations;
  • Develop leadership opportunities for municipal staff and residents  designed to provide career advancement pathways for communities of color, the disability community, immigrants and refugees, LGBTQ+ residents, including continued hosting of an annual Civic Engagement Academy;
  • Provide leadership, guidance, training, and support to internal and external partners in the development and delivery of equity programs and tools;
  • Recruit and manage municipal boards and commissions to ensure community representation;
  • Actively monitor equity:
  • Establish baseline equity data targets/benchmarks in collaboration with partners and establish goals and initiatives to make progress and processes to track outcomes;
  • Develop methods to determine how disparate impacts will be documented and evaluated;
  • Collect, evaluate, and analyze indicators and progress benchmarks related to addressing systemic disparities.
  • Direct, evaluate, and coordinate analyses and recommendations regarding race and equity policy issues and long-range plans to address department and community needs and services;
  • Develop and coordinate reports and supporting materials to be presented to the Mayor and Assembly for information or action;
  • Ensure municipal compliance with Language Access laws;
  • Work closely with the Office of Equal Opportunity, the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission, the Ombudsman Office, and the Resilience Subcabinet
  • Represent equity concerns throughout municipal efforts on housing equity, food security, equitable climate action, legal rights and justice issues, and economic equity
  • Develop and deepen relationships with community members and non- profits committed to racial equity work; and participates in community equity collaborations on behalf of the Municipality to identify and address cumulative impacts of institutional and structural inequities in the Municipality.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Really??? Beginning to think the Peninsula isn’t far enough away from Anchorage.

  • Should start out more honestly, maybe naming it the People’s Directorate of Equity and Justice. Betcha they’ll get some snazzy uniforms too.

  • Seems redundant as we already have the Equal Rights Commission and the Office of Equal Opportunity as well as the Ombudsman. If the Mayor needs a full time person to report to him what the other three agencies are doing Maybe the Mayor should get up a little earlier. This one will take some study and thought.

    • I agree with Tom. This is redundant and a waste of taxpayers’ money. Stop this nonsense!

  • There isn’t a soul alive that could be unbiased & hold this office! Look at the last Alaska Civil rights office holders !

  • We can’t get this guy out of office fast enough. He’ll go down as worst mayor ever.

    • That will make Tony Knowles happy.

  • I would much rather see them use the ministerial organizations that already exist and have a proven track record,for interracial harmony in advancing social justice.

  • This is absurd! Another example of government growth. Is this a wise and prudent use of tax dollars? Really?

  • Outline for duties (responsibilities) of this new’ Chief Equity Officer’ looks like he or she will needing a staff of 300 or so so I guess the BP Building may be added to the list of Building to be purchased to house this agency

  • The idiot’s new vote getting feel good job.

  • A well paid sinecure for political allies. Like when Mayor Begich put Chris Toal in charge of a new municipality department dealing with the environment. They will be able to wash lots of campaign money through this office. Grants to non-profits who turn around and provide support for machine candidates at election time, all paid for by Anchorage tax payers.

  • Now is not the time for this b*******. imagine one of the mayor’s cronies or he himself after he please office will be appointed to this position….but the people of Anchorage Alaska largesse with their money.

    • Going to need the Golden Lion for offices for this idea. I think Rock has it……..Bernie is creating positions he can move in to when he limits out as Mayor.

  • What a joke, but then that’s what Berkowitz is.

  • I still don’t think Anchorage has seen the ‘worst’ yet. With the support of the Alaska ‘legislature’ doling out the CARE money, no end in sight for the little fella.
    I’ve been traveling to Anchorage for enjoyment, convenience and necessity since the highway was all gravel. I enjoyed driving my hot rod to the Bun Drive In, going to drive in theaters (Billiken and Fireweed), Fourth Avenue theater and restaurants galore. I went to Anchorage to play high school basketball against West & East Anchorage. I loved Anchorage. People were friendly. Tons of stuff to do (for a country boy). I was never in a hurry to leave. Now I am avoiding the formerly wonderful city. I have no desire to make a trip to Anchorage unless I absolutely must. When I do have to go, I will limit my visit to the least amount of time it takes to conduct my business. Anchorage is becoming like L.A., San Francisco, Portland, Seattle and any other leftist commandeered city. Unfriendly, unwelcoming, everyone looking over their shoulder and fools driving the political machine. No thank you.
    Kind of makes one wonder, what drives all those refugees to escape and smuggle themselves to America? Or is that why this is happening to our country? The muslim refugees are trying to make swaths of America into muslim ”only”, politically, legally and ethnically. Ethiopian and Somali enclaves throughout America, trying to make their new homes into the mess they “escaped” from. Most refugees, of whatever race or ethnicity, are here for the ‘free stuff’ that isn’t available to them at ‘home’. Alaska is pulling into that downhill grade, now. Sure hope we can stop.
    November is coming. Keep those memories of this episode in socialist ‘democracy’ at the fore.

  • Let me guess. The new “office of equity and justice” will be to help white people who are being discriminated against, are victims of racism and need ‘equitable justice’ to help overcome prejudice, racism, violence and vitriol against whites. Could this be real? It makes more sense than the bullet pointed ‘responsibilities’ of the new office and staff for any other race or ethnicity.
    I think I’m awake now. Of course the “office of equity and justice”, with the undoubtedly large staff, will bring just that, only their idea of it and not to white citizens, in any case. White folks only get to pay. That’s the ‘new’ way. Another ‘sampling’ of what is to come if the little fella and cronies stay at the helm.

    • Ben you are so spot on. George Soros is the mastermind behind it. Also the arm chair warriors that utilize social media to create the violence & protests are into Farakhan. Alot of rappers , Snoop Dog etc basketball players, football players also are now into Islam.. The Marxists are winning.. Nick Cannon utilizes his office in Hollywood for these meetings. They recently sent out illegal memos throughout the Army. Congressman Mo Brooks sent out letters to Washington . Read about it. Its an atrocity what is occurring.

  • Another city tax increase is on the way!!!

  • Ok, really…how do we get this fruitcake out? …and I mean NOW.???

  • Another office the state can’t afford!!!! Keep spending that money that state doesn’t have!!!! Pure ignorance!!!!

  • Anchorage: the lost city

    Berkowitz administration: the lost years.

    Sad what has happened.

  • This crap is getting out of hand. Throwing MY money at idiot ideas to solve nonexistent problems is not happening. Every tax payer ought to be at the assembly meetings raising hell.

  • This is where you will see the nest egg of profits from the utility sale voters approved disappear. He is already trying to misuse CARE ACT Funds while small businesses and DayCares go bankrupt. How do you plan to work for a living without daycare if your children go to school two days a week and on shifting schedules. Take the children to work days when they are not in school? This Department is a waste of money along with the proposed purchase of buildings for the homeless, addicts and alcoholics that won’t come in when you give them shelter and food. Mr Mayor tell the taxpayers the figures for homeless using your first two shelters and the cost per person to provide those services. An average of 350 to 400 out of 1600 homeless. So few you closed one for a lack of use. Great job and very smart use of funds. Why doesn’t the Mayor call this what it really is. The Department to Foster Racism and flood money to people that refuse to work or contribute to society. I have lived here over 50 years and this State does more for its minorities than any other State. Anchorage will be the new San Francisco and LA of the North. When you provide for people without requiring work responsibility they will flock to the honey like bees.

  • Actually the ordinance is quite clear. The new office is specifically created to coordinate racism and discrimination against white men. It is always entertaining when the left becomes what they claim to hate the most. Cheers –

  • Why now? He is in his final term with less then a year. If this is an E position then when the new administration comes in all E positions have to tender a resignation and wait to see if the new administration wants them. This a lot of money to set up infrastructure with less then a year remaining in his position as mayor…. so ask yourself why now?

  • Should be fun to see what happens when the Peoples Commissariat of Equity and Justice, armed with enforcement, approval, and subpoena authority, forces itself on Anchorage’s real-estate market.
    .
    Imagine how equitable and just Anchorage’s neighborhoods will be under the watchful eye of the Peoples Commissariat of Equity and Justice.
    .
    Can’t happen to residents who’ve already demonstrated their willingness to give up their Constitutional freedoms in the name of a panic-demic?
    .
    Keep thinking that.

  • Back in 1980 I was working on the campaign of someone who was running for the Alaska Senate, unsuccessfully as it turned out. During that campaign I was talking with a local Filipino leader, long since deceased, who was also working on the campaign. He said the Filipino community was still recovering from losing some of its best people to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act. I could not imagine what he meant and told him so. He said many Filipinos chose to become Alaska Native to enroll in ANCSA corporations as that paid far better than any benefit from continuing to be Filipino. While that ANCSA enrollment is now settled there is no downside to choosing to be a minority, and there is absolutely no upside to any Alaskan, his/her family, and his/her community to being a non-minority. After all, every one of us is from a place that has always been (whatever the heck that means).

  • More fraud, waste and abuse.

  • This type of story is a distraction from the main event:: The War President v. Covid. The War President was fearless and brave as he battled the deadly virus. A mask. Hell no. Not gonna wear one. And then after four long months, our leader quit fighting. He put on a mask. Suddenly, it just went away.

    • Why.

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