Ariel Worthy, WESA, March 10, 2020
Pittsburgh City Councilors Daniel Lavelle and Ricky Burgess introduced legislation on Tuesday that asks the city to adopt 10 commitments to racial equity.
The proposed resolution is part of the “All-In City” initiative, a racial-equity effort that Burgess and Lavelle embraced last year. The 10 commitments include: eliminating race-based disparities across all of city government departments and units; using training and coaching opportunities to eliminate systematic racism and white privilege; and transforming African-American communities from areas of concentrated poverty to mixed-income.
The resolution also calls for a commission to monitor the city’s progress toward racial equity. The 13-member body would also serve as a forum for discussing issues like reparations intended to compensate for slavery and other longstanding racial inequities. Local activists have sought action on that issue since last fall.
Lavelle said reparations don’t necessarily mean financial payment.
The commission will include at least 13 people, including: a representative from Mayor Bill Peduto’s office, two city councilors, an attorney knowledgeable about racial equity issues, members of civil rights organizations, and someone who has professional experience in economics and financial policy.
Council is set to discuss the 10 commitments resolution next week.