As we work to dismantle structural, systemic, and institutionalized racism, we need systemic solutions to tear down the barriers that exist and prevent the creation of new barriers.
Several Partnership members have succeeded in passing legislation that requires or pilots racial impact notes on proposed legislation in their states. A racial impact statement or note is an analysis of a bill that identifies the impact key elements of the proposal would have by race or on each racial minority group. These laws will help legislators understand the consequences of bills they are considering and help advocates make the case for or against bills based on a more detailed understanding and examination of racial groups. Racial impact statements or notes will improve legislation that affects children and families, by ensuring that the consequences of every bill are understood and considered for identified racial groups.
Partnership members have been at the front of the effort to require this analysis for legislative proposals. Recently, Illinois passed the most comprehensive racial impact note requirement in the country. Maryland, Maine, and DC have also passed racial impact note bills, led by or with the support of child advocacy organizations.
- Tasha Green Cruzat, Senior Fellow of the Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy, University of California Irvine School of Law
- Mitch Lifson, Vice President for Policy and Operations, Voices for Illinois Children
- Mariama Boney, Interim Executive Director, Advocates for Children and Youth, (Maryland)
- Rachel White, Child Welfare Policy Director, Advocates for Children and Youth (Maryland)
An overview of racial impact statements: https://www.sentencingproject.org/publications/racial-impact-statements/