City of Dallas and 100 Resilient Cities unveil Resilience Strategy containing Equity Indicators Framework

“Resilient Dallas” – Dallas’s citywide Resilience Strategy outlines path to shared prosperity for all residents

Dallas City Manager T.C. Broadnax, Regina Montoya, Chair of the Community Advisory Committee and 100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) unveiled Resilient Dallas, the first holistic Resilience Strategy in the city’s history. Resilient Dallas is a new approach to shaping a thriving, equitable city, and is the product of extensive community participation. The Resilience Strategy presents a roadmap for addressing the city’s most pressing and interconnected challenges, leading to shared prosperity across Dallas, and was developed by Chief Resilience Officer Theresa O’Donnell with extensive financial and technical backing from 100RC.

“Dallas is a prosperous community, and we are blessed with the continued prospect of sustained economic growth,” said City Manager T.C. Broadnax. “But despite an optimistic outlook, large segments of our community are not thriving. Too many of our residents are confronted every day by challenges to simply exist—homelessness, poverty, social and racial inequity, gun violence, access to quality education. This is Dallas’ true resilience challenge: overcoming the social and economic challenges that deny many of our residents’ social justice and economic well-being for themselves and their families.”

Dallas faces a range of shocks and stresses, though the dramatically widening income disparities among its residents has been identified as the city’s paramount resilience challenge. With equity at its core, Resilient Dallas offers a clear outline for the city’s future.

“A truly thriving Dallas is a city whose residents are free from the burden of poverty and disparity,” said Regina Montoya, chair of the Community Advisory Committee. “I believe the goals and initiatives identified in Resilient Dallas provide a solid roadmap to begin this effort.”

Resilient Dallas includes 20 initiatives and 49 actions for residents, neighborhoods, the City, and partners to implement. These actions, some of which are already underway, build on existing efforts or address program and policy gaps to further resilience in Dallas. Resilient Dallas is organized into seven leading goals:

  1. Advance equity in City government.
  2. Ensure Dallas is a Welcoming City to immigrants and all residents.
  3. Increase economic mobility for Dallas’ vulnerable and marginalized residents.
  4. Ensure Dallas provides residents with reasonable, reliable, and equitable access to transit.
  5. Leverage partnerships to promote healthy communities.
  6. Invest in neighborhood infrastructure to revitalize historically underserved neighborhoods.
  7. Promote environmental sustainability to improve public health and alleviate adverse environmental conditions.

“Dallas ISD is committed to Racial, Socio-Economic and Educational Equity,” said Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa. “The goals and objectives set forth in Resilient Dallas are critical to ensure our future leaders live and work in a city that is thriving and equitable, now and in the future.”

Released alongside the Resilience Strategy are the initial outcomes of the Dallas Equity Indicators project, developed in collaboration with the City University of New York Institute for State and Local Governance (CUNY ISLG) and the Institute for Urban Policy Research at the University of Texas at Dallas as a comprehensive tool to help Dallas understand and measure equity. It is designed to measure disparities faced by marginalized or disadvantaged groups, measured for 72 indicators across six domains: Economic Opportunity, Education, Housing and Neighborhood Quality, Justice and Government, Public Health, and Transportation and Infrastructure. The indicators and baseline findings were presented today at a Dallas City Council meeting, and a full report will be made available online later this month; the overall 2018 city score was 44 out of 100. Moving forward, the City of Dallas will conduct this analysis and report the findings annually.

“With the release of this tool, the City of Dallas has taken a critical step towards developing and implementing more equitable city policy,” said CUNY ISLG Executive Director Michael Jacobson. “The Equity Indicators will provide a way for both government and the general public to track Dallas’ progress towards greater equity year after year.”

The Equity Indicators framework has been fully integrated into the pages of Resilient Dallas, under the theme “A Resilient Dallas is an equitable Dallas.” With the release of the Equity Indicators, which form the basis of several concrete initiatives, implementation of Resilient Dallas is already underway. The City has furthermore committed to identifying and measuring inequity to drive collaborative action across sectors, in addition to incorporating an Equity Lens into the citywide visioning process for Goals for Dallas 2030, creation of the City’s Strategic Plan, and development of the biennial budget.

“This is a historic moment for the City of Dallas, an active member of the 100RC global network for the past four years,” said Otis Rolley, Managing Director of North America at 100 Resilient Cities. “Resilient Dallas sets out a pioneering vision for addressing inequity as one of the major challenges of the 21st Century; we are proud to stand behind that vision and support its realization.”

There will be a media availability at the conclusion of the Human and Social Needs Committee meeting, Monday, June 11, at approximately 12:30 p.m.

The full Resilient Dallas Resilience Strategy can be found at www.100resilientcities.org/strategies/dallas.

The Dallas Equity Indicators can be accessed at the City of Dallas website.

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About 100 Resilient Cities—Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation 

100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) helps cities around the world become more resilient to the physical, social, and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. 100RC provides this assistance through: funding for a Chief Resilience Officer in each member city who will lead the resilience efforts; resources for drafting a resilience strategy; access to private sector, public sector, academic, and NGO resilience tools; and membership in a global network of peer cities to share best practices and challenges. For more information, visit: www.100ResilientCities.org.

Equity Indicators Partners

About City University of New York Institute for State and Local Governance

CUNY ISLG works with organizations across the world to apply a data-driven approach to the challenges and opportunities confronting government. CUNY ISLG focuses on government at the state and local levels as cities and states are ideal laboratories for developing new approaches to longstanding social problems. CUNY ISLG’s mission is to improve the structure, financing, delivery, measurement, and evaluation of vital public services by helping partners build the capacity to collect and analyze data. CUNY ISLG also designs, implements, and evaluates projects using empirical evidence about process and outcomes. For more information, visit www.islg.cuny.edu.

About the Institute for Urban Policy Research at the University of Texas at Dallas

The Institute for Urban Policy Research, founded in 2005 as the J. McDonald Williams Institute, is dedicated to improving lives and quality of life through community-based research that informs, motivates, and empowers ordinary people and the policy makers, civic leaders, and organizations who serve them. With offices on the campus of The University of Texas at Dallas, and friends and partners in the community, we harness the most rigorous analytical tools and methods available to clarify the complex issues faced by the residents of distressed communities. For more information, visit www.urbanpolicyresearch.org.