TAM strives to be a welcoming place for all members of our community. We recognize that we have a lot of work to do to achieve that goal. We also recognize that this work must begin internally with our own staff as we work from the inside out to impact all members of our community. Equity requires transparency and partnership and with that spirit, we share this update. In June, we shared some commitments to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) with specific action steps we planned to take, as well as a promise to update our community on our progress.
Here is where we are:
- We have hired Potential Unleashed Consulting, a local diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting firm to support us with a holistic approach to this work including assessments, trainings, consulting, coaching and the development of sustainable policies and procedures.
- Potential Unleashed conducted a series of 15 relational assessments/listening sessions and a follow-up written survey with staff, board, and volunteers to inform the design of this work moving forward. All staff were invited to participate in the interviews and survey. Specific listening sessions were dedicated to staff affinity groups for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ staff. Following the completion of the assessments, a report was drafted and provided to the staff in written form as well as through an overview Q & A session.
- Staff and board members participated in foundational trainings in anti-racism to provide a shared understanding of language and concepts.
Here are our next steps:
- We will be conducting a formal internal evaluation of DEIA at TAM as part of our work with Tacoma Creates.
- Staff and board will participate in a dedicated training on understanding and interrupting microaggressions.
- Potential Unleashed Consulting will assist TAM in reinvigorating its internal Equity Team, which will direct much of this work moving forward.
- Leadership will participate in on going coaching focused on leading through Equity.
- We will begin a policy and procedures audit, reviewing both written and unwritten rules, to identify potential bias. Identified policies will be reimagined to be more equitable.
- We will hire a DEIA Officer in Summer 2021 as a permanent member of TAM’s leadership team and to continue this internal work.
The work is, of course, ongoing, and we look forward to sharing additional updates as we continue.
We welcome community feedback. Please reach out to David F. Setford, TAM’s Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org, with your thoughts.