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Race and Culture Task Force presents interim report, receives more time to complete work

Posted May 2, 2018

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task force members speak
Race and Culture Task Force co-chairs welcome residents to one of more than a dozen community meetings held so far.

The City Council on May 1 approved an interim report from the Task Force on Race and Culture and agreed to extend the deadline for the group to complete its work until the end of this year.

After the 23-member task force began to hear from local residents about the extensive impacts of race and culture upon their lives, members determined that the scope of work originally assigned by the City Council was not broad enough to tackle the complex issues related to race and culture in Fort Worth. The Council agreed that a broadened scope of work and more time to investigate the issues will result in a better end product that effectively addresses disparities and community concerns.

So far, more than 1,200 residents have participated in the town hall-style meetings and smaller gatherings called Community Conversations. Some of the feedback received so far:

  • There is common perception that little or nothing is being done by the City of Fort Worth to improve race relations, racial equity or cultural awareness. The city is perceived to be reactive rather than proactive.
  • The problem is systemic, structural and institutional racism, not simply personal or individual acts of racism.
  • Many residents believe that city leaders have failed to acknowledge this problem.
  • There is a need to continue, expand and deepen community conversations about race and culture.

Six subcommittees are meeting to study racial equity and bias in several areas: criminal justice, economic development, education, health, housing and transportation. Each of the six subcommittees includes members of the larger Race and Culture Task Force, as well as subject matter experts and support staff from the City of Fort Worth. Over the next few months, subcommittees will submit recommendations to the task force.

Once the draft recommendations are compiled, the task force will ask for community input through a series of meetings and online engagement tools. The task force will present its final plan to the City Council in December.

About the task force

In 2017, the City Council appointed a 23-member task force to advise on issues related to race and culture in Fort Worth.

Co-chairs are Rosa Navejar (presiding co-chair), Lillie Biggins, Rabbi Andrew Bloom and Bob Ray Sanders. Task force members: Charles Boswell, Walter Dansby, Robert Fernandez, Miriam Frias, Robert Goldberg, Yolanda Harper, Bishop Mark Kirkland, Nima Malek, Rattana Mao, Arturo Martinez, Roxanne Martinez, Judy McDonald, Terry Mossige, Cory Session, Katie Sherrod, Ty Stimpson, Jennifer Trevino, Monica Vasquez and the Rev. Tim Woody.

The task force was asked to engage Fort Worth residents in a series of healthy conversations about race and culture, draw conclusions from these conversations and make recommendations to the City Council. The task force will also review findings of a study on disparities in how municipal services are provided, then advise councilmembers on a strategy to promote racial and cultural equity.

The task force will also advise City Manager David Cooke on an appropriate leadership training dealing with race and cultural issues.

For regular updates on the task force’s work, follow them on social media:

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Calendar

Building Standards Commission Pre-Meeting: 9 a.m. Oct. 22, 2018; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Building Standards Commission Meeting: 9:30 a.m. Oct. 22, 2018; Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Ad Hoc Municipal Court Advisory Committee: 11:30 a.m. Oct. 22, 2018; City Managers Conference Room 380, Third Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Trinity Metro Board of Directors Meeting: 3:30 p.m. Oct. 22, 2018; Intermodal Transportation Center, Second Floor, Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
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Hammond Street Drainage Improvements Project Meeting: 6 p.m. Oct. 22, 2018; Victory Forest Community Center, 3427 Hemphill St.

Bellaire Channel Stormwater Maintenance Project Meeting: 6 p.m. Oct. 22, 2018; South Hills Christian Church, 3200 Bilglade Road.

Senior Spooky Social at Hillside: 10 a.m. Oct. 23, 2018; Hillside Community Center, 1201 E. Maddox Ave.

Audit Committee: 2 p.m. Oct. 23, 2018; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. Oct. 23, 2018; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. Oct. 23, 2018; Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Metropolitan Area EMS Authority/MedStar Mobile Healthcare: 10 a.m. Oct. 24, 2018; MedStar Mobile Healthcare, 2900 Alta Mere Drive.
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City Plan Commission Work Session: 11:30 a.m. Oct. 24, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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City Plan Commission Public Hearing: 1:30 p.m. Oct. 24, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.
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Park & Recreation Advisory Board Work Session: 3 p.m. Oct. 24, 2018; Diamond Hill Community Center, 1701 Northeast 36th Street.
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Park & Recreation Advisory Board Meeting: 4 p.m. Oct. 24, 2018; Diamond Hill Community Center, 1701 Northeast 36th Street.
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Rolling Townhall: Spooky Bike Ride: 5:30 p.m. Oct. 24, 2018; Western Heritage Plaza (in front of the Museum of Science and History), 1600 Gendy St.

Arlington Heights Stormwater Meeting: 6 p.m. Oct. 24, 2018; Fort Worth Professional Firefighters Hall, 3855 Tulsa Way.

Central Arlington Heights Public Meeting - Voluntary Property Acquisitions: 6 p.m. Oct. 24, 2018; Fort Worth Professional Firefighters Hall, 3855 Tulsa Way.

Emergency Physicians Advisory Board: 12:30 p.m. Oct. 25, 2018; TCMS Building, 3rd Floor, 555 Hemphill.
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Lights On Afterschool at Greenbriar: 5 p.m. Oct. 25, 2018; Greenbriar Community Center, 5200 Hemphill St.

Fall Festival at Chisholm Trail: 6 p.m. Oct. 25, 2018; Chisholm Trail Community Center, 4936 McPherson Blvd.

Fort Worth Business Plan Competition Finals: 6 p.m. Oct. 25, 2018; TCU Brown Lupton University Union Ballroom, 2901 Stadium Drive.
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Responsible Pet Ownership Class: 6 p.m. Oct. 25, 2018; Chuck Silcox Animal Care & Adoption Center, 4900 Martin Street.

Collective Bargaining Negotiations with International Association of Fire Fighters, Local Union 440: 1:30 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; IAFF Local 440 Office, 3855 Tulsa Way.
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Lead Safe Community Resource Fair: 4 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; La Gran Plaza Mall, 4200 South Fwy.

Fall Festival at Diamond Hill: 5 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; Diamond Hill Community Center, 1701 NE 36th St.

Fall Festival at Hillside: 6 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; Hillside Community Center, 1201 E. Maddox Ave.

Fall Festival at Greenbriar: 6 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; Greenbriar Community Center, 5200 Hemphill St.

Fall Festival at Highland Hills: 6 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; Highland Hills Community Center, 1600 Glasgow Rd..

Fall Festival at Fire Station Community Center: 7 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; Fire Station Community Center, 1601 Lipscomb St.

Fall Festival at R.D. Evans: 7 p.m. Oct. 26, 2018; R.D. Evans Community Center, 3242 Lackland Rd..

Overcoming Trauma Domestic Violence Youth & Families Summit and Community Resource Fair: 9 a.m. Oct. 27, 2018; Christ Chapel Bible Church, 3701 Birchman Ave.
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Everything You Need to Start a Business: 9 a.m. Oct. 27, 2018; Business Assistance Center at the Guinn Campus, 1150 South Freeway.
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Restaurant Boot Camp: For New and Existing Restaurant Owners: 9 a.m. Oct. 27, 2018; Business Assistance Center at the Guinn Campus, 1150 South Freeway.
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Fall Festival at Andrew Doc Session: 10 a.m. Oct. 27, 2018; Andrew Doc Session Community Center, 201 S. Sylvania Ave.

Halloween Carnival at North Tri-Ethnic: 10 a.m. Oct. 27, 2018; North Tri-Ethnic Community Center, 2950 Roosevelt Ave.

Fall Festival at Southside: 11 a.m. Oct. 27, 2018; Southside Community Center, 959 E. Rosedale St.

Fall Festival at Northside: 2 p.m. Oct. 27, 2018; Northside Community Center, 1100 NW 18th St.

View the full city calendar and current meetings.