The Office of Race and Equity is the latest evolution of a multi-year effort within Caltrans to reaffirm our commitment to address the systemic racial inequities that exist within the public transportation sector. In 2018, Caltrans sent a cohort of headquarters staff to participate in the State's growing involvement with the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), which is a large, nationwide network of government advocates working to achieve racial equity and equal opportunities for all.
2018 GARE Cohort: Learning Year
In 2018 a group of Caltrans Headquarters staff participated in the Capitol Cohort Learning Year. During this year, staff engaged in training from Racial Equity 101 to tools for equity solutions such as Results Based Accountability. The GARE model teaches a circular strategy around normalizing conversations around race and equity, organizing internal infrastructure and partnerships, and operationalizing equity tools and policies, and creating institutional change. One of the tools introduced during this year was a Racial Equity Action Plan (REAP) and each department was challenged to create a REAP specific to their department's roles and responsibilities in California.
2019 GARE Cohort: Implementation Year
The next year of participation was geared toward refining and implementing the REAPs created during the learning year of the Capitol Cohort. This year also focused on collaboration between the state agencies participating. Participating departments were given time for networking, knowledge and content sharing, and cross agency strategizing. Some of the other state agencies participating include the California Department of Public Health, the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and the Department of Social Services. In the 2019 Capitol Cohort, Caltrans expanded our team to include district participants, as we know needs vary across the state and district/division implementation of equity strategies will be specific to the needs of the region and programs.
2020 GARE Cohort: CCORE Advanced Implementation
In 2020 SGC and PHI are strengthening the focus to advancing equity in CA by leading the advanced implementation year, the California Collaborative on Race and Equity (CCORE). Caltrans is looking forward to continued commitment to learning and implementing the tools and strategies included in our Race and Equity Action Plan.