ASPA President Studies Social Inequities in Government

Seattle on the Right Track

ASPA President Susan Gooden has studied the reluctance of governments to address social inequity. She urges government managers to attack racism head-on and recently made headlines in Seattle, Wash., when she indicated the city was on the path toward the ideal on tackling race inequity.

The Seattle Times covered her discussion at the University of Washington Evans School of Public Policy & Governance last week where she went through a series of slides outlining her research. She specifically showed a slide that demonstrated how every area of life affects every other. As Times author Jerry Large noted: "Gooden said Seattle is on a path toward the ideal. She spent time in 2012 studying the history of the Race and Social Justice Initiative and traced the roots back to Norm Rice’s work as a council member, and later as mayor, to address inequality. Paul Schell succeeded Rice as mayor in 1998, which was also the year Washington voters passed the anti-affirmative-action Initiative 200."

The presentation at the Evans School was approximately an hour long and focused on her 2014 book, Race & Social Equity: A Nervous Area of Government.

"Kudos to your university administration and those at the Evans School for your dedication and commitment to equity," Gooden said during her opening remarks. "We definitely need more thinking, more writing more publishing and more engagement around these topics."

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