In a blog post last week, Kresge Foundation president Rip Rapson wrote that while equity was implied in the foundation's existing value set, it needed to be made explicit. Without equity, Rapson added, the other values "are incomplete — insufficiently infused by the imperatives of equality and justice."
According to the foundation's new equity statement, equity means "that all people — regardless of race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ZIP code, health and ability status, or any other consideration — have equal and inviolable dignity, value, and opportunity to participate justly, fairly, and fully in all dimensions of civic and economic life...to prosper...and to reach their full potential."
"Since this country's inception, every facet of community life has been shaped by pervasive, enduring, corrosive, and invidious structural and institutional impediments to racial equity and racial justice," the equity statement notes. "Kresge's mission will be realized only when those impediments have been dismantled and pathways of equitable opportunity substituted in their place."
To that end, the foundation will critically examine "the values, implicit biases, policies, and practices that drive both [its] internal culture and external engagements" and shape "an institutional role that propels, rather than impedes, progress for the communities [it] aim[s] to serve."
(Image credit: Kresge Foundation)