SENATE JOINT MEMORIAL 5
52nd legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - second session, 2016
Linda M. Lopez
A JOINT MEMORIAL
ENCOURAGING EVERY AGENCY AND ENTITY THAT RECEIVES STATE FUNDING TO ADOPT A POLICY TO ADDRESS INSTITUTIONAL RACISM.
WHEREAS, it is the policy of the state to promote racial and social equity, as reflected in state and federal constitutional provisions, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, New Mexico's Human Rights Act, the international convention on the elimination of all forms of racial discrimination and the United States report to the committee on the elimination of racial discrimination at the United Nations, all of which have made efforts to eliminate racial discrimination and other forms of intolerance; and
WHEREAS, increasing racial equity creates educational opportunities and employment and investment and other economic opportunities for New Mexico and its residents by cultivating the human potential and capital of the state; and
WHEREAS, creating greater racial and ethnic diversity and equity throughout state government will improve decision-making and problem-solving; and
WHEREAS, to ameliorate the pervasive effects of racism, it is not only individual acts of racial prejudice, discrimination and bias, whether conscious or unconscious, that must be remedied but also institutional racism, which includes those acts that result in differential access to the goods, services and opportunities of society due to the existence of institutional programs, policies and practices that intentionally or unintentionally place certain racial and ethnic groups at a disadvantage in relation to other groups; and
WHEREAS, as shown by empirical data, institutional racism results in racial and social disparities with respect to health, education, criminal justice, the environment, employment, housing, the economy and other key indicators of well-being in New Mexico; and
WHEREAS, every state-funded agency and entity should review its policies and practices to ensure that it does not contribute to institutional racism; and
WHEREAS, to improve fairness and extend opportunity in state government and in the delivery of state services, every state-funded agency and entity should develop no-cost practices and guidelines, such as promoting fairness and inclusion in seeking input, assessing applicant pools or making fiscal or other asset allocations by checking for inequitable effects before making final decisions; providing services in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner; being respectful in the treatment of individuals or groups that traditionally have been burdened by discrimination; and recognizing that the core principles of democracy are given expression by having people with different worldviews, opinions, experiences, family stories and community histories involved in the work of government; and
WHEREAS, the state of New Mexico affirms its commitment to principles of equity and freedom for all people, regardless of race or ethnicity;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO that every state-funded agency and entity be requested to adopt a policy to address institutional racism no later than January 1, 2017; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this memorial be transmitted to the office of the governor.
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