Biden administration rolls out ‘equity action plans’ to government agencies

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The Biden administration this week rolled out a number of strategies across government agencies to promote racial equity and support “underserved communities” to carry out an executive order from President Biden.

Biden signed an executive order on inauguration day directing agencies to “pursue a comprehensive approach to advancing equity for all, including people of color and others who have been historically underserved, marginalized, and affected by poverty and persistent inequalities”.

PENTAGON LAUNCHES AN “EQUITY” PLAN

More than a year later, more than 90 agencies, including all cabinet departments, have released their plans, outlining more than 300 strategies and action plans to make federal policies fairer.

“Across the federal government, agencies are taking ambitious steps to expand federal investments and support in communities that have been denied opportunity for too long, including communities of color, tribal communities, communities rural, LGBTQI+ communities, people with disabilities, women and girls, and communities affected by persistent poverty,” the White House said.

President Joe Biden
(REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo)

The Department of Homeland Security released a plan that will focus on everything from naturalization, access to humanitarian protection, bidding for DHS contracts, combating all forms of terrorism and violence. targeting, filing complaints and seeking redress in DHS programs and activities, screening and airport access. Trusted Traveler Programs.

DHS LAUNCHES FIRST ‘EQUITY ACTION PLAN’

As part of this plan, DHS is committed to “identifying barriers that may impede access to naturalization among underserved communities” and removing those barriers to facilitate the naturalization process. Additionally, DHS said it would “expand engagement” with small businesses that are owned by or support “members of underserved communities.”

The department also said it would work to “expand gender identification options” for certain traveler programs like TSA PreCheck.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon has announced that it will seek to revamp its supply chain to open up opportunities for underserved communities. It will also strengthen a variety of programs aimed at helping those same communities in the area of ​​military bases, such as Native American initiatives and environmental efforts.

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In other agencies, the Department of Labor is stepping up enforcement of wage and hour protections, while the Department of Housing and Urban Development is working to close the racial gap in homeownership. The Environmental Protection Agency said it was developing a framework to assess the impacts of pollution on underserved communities and help low-income households weatherproof their homes.

The Department of Justice is improving language access to its programs to help those with limited English proficiency better report crimes, while the Department of the Interior provides technical assistance to Native American tribes to help them apply for grants.

The administration has touted the plans as “an important step forward.”

“Advancing equity is not a one-year project, it’s a generational commitment,” the White House said.

Fox News’ Kyle Morris and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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