Healthy and Safe Communities

Provide quality and equitable housing, health, and human services for all.

Goal 2, Objective 3

Identify and eliminate data gaps for underrepresented groups, and collaborate with the community to implement measures to mitigate the negative impacts caused by the lack of access to services by racial and ethnic groups that are disproportionately under-served by 2026.
On Track 60%

Updated: January 2024

Summary of Objective Implementation Status

Countywide rollout of Anti-Racist Results-Based Accountability (AR-RBA), to create long-term infrastructure through lessons learned from County and community-based organization’s efforts in the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Community Resilience Programs (CRP) continues, as does the refining of capacity building and technical assistance both internally and externally to support data collection, reporting, and mapping of ARPA CRP.

  1. Staff continues to hone, strengthen and create long-term infrastructure and skill sets in Safety Net Departments through a partnership between the Office of Equity and Human Services Department/Upstream Investments.
    1. Trainings: RBA to AR-RBA transition and equitable data collection, offered to internal County employees and to CBO staff.
    2. Example: The Universal Disaster Intake Process (UDIP) closes gaps in data related to disaster response and recovery with an equitable frame. The UDIP was developed with community partners to connect long-term recovery systems with emergency service delivery through a single intake and data management system to improve client recovery outcomes.
    3. Example: The Office of Equity continues to refine Portrait of Sonoma and Winter Storm 2023 data and continue to gather and critically review data sets with increasing ability to see the needs of particular populations in the county. As we further develop and refine data markers, it allows us to create clearer paths to action.
    4. Example: The Office of Equity Steering Committee is developing a Race Equity Action Plan– reviewing existing data and developing strategies to continue to close data gaps inside of County systems
  2. The Office of Equity worked with Health Action Together community partners and community to engage in data validation and creating actionable plans related to these data validation efforts for the Agenda for Action update.

Key Milestone Update

Using the ARPA AR-RBA work as a pilot process, Office of Equity and Upstream Investments have been able to roll out AR-RBA trainings for internal County departments and external community partners, highlighting the importance of collecting disaggregated ethnoracial data, guiding best practices for asking these sensitive and important questions, and analyzing the demographic data that gets collected.

Upstream Investments and the Office of Equity partnered to refine Upstream’s existing intake form in the Shared Outcomes Measurement System to create an enhanced universal intake form for the ARPA CRP with significant community input.  The Department of Emergency Management, Human Services Department/Upstream and the Office of Equity partnered to use this enhanced universal intake form for the development of the UDIP to be used during disaster events. The intake form from the January 2023 winter storms also informed the development of the UDIP. The intake form now provides community members with a wider-range of demographic data options, within categories of race/ethnicity, spoken language, gender, sexual orientation, and disability, to better reflect their full selves, should they choose to self-identify.

The Office of Equity Steering Committee utilized Anti-Racist Results-Based Accountability principles to identify the roots of inequities pertaining to members’ Departments or Agencies and used their areas of expertise and to visualize strategic solutions to those inequities as critical pieces of a Countywide effort to establish accountability for the policies and programs that continue to perpetuate inequities among local communities of color through the Race Equity Action Plan.

Steering Committee members are working to develop the data infrastructure to collect data by race/ethnicity, nativity, gender identity, socioeconomic status, and disability status, as well as by neighborhood. This data will help Departments gain a better and more accurate understanding of the needs of underrepresented groups in our community and their complex experiences. These analyses are key to understanding whether County resources and programs are being equitably distributed and reaching communities of focus, and will form the basis for a Racial Equity Action Plan, to be brought before the Board for review and recommendation to approve in June 2024.

The Office of Equity also received funding for a time-limited Anti-Racist Results-Based Accountability Program Planning and Evaluation Analyst (PPEA) to lead the planning, development, and implementation of this equity-centered, data-driven process throughout the County. That position has been filled, to start November 28, 2023.

Coordination and Partnership Update

There are major pieces of connectivity to the Racial Equity & Social Justice Pillar, and this data infrastructure and analysis work will ensure that the County and its partners have the disaggregated data to support focused and targeted investments with common metrics and performance measures across the systems.

The newly funded Office of Equity AR-RBA PPEA, with our Upstream Investments partners in the Human Services Department and the Office of Equity’s consultants, will join in convenings of Safety Net departments (Health Services, Human Services, Housing, Probation, District Attorney, Sheriff, the Courts, Child Support Services, and Public Defender) to transition from traditional Results-Based Accountability approaches to an actionable anti-racist accountability system that prioritizes humanistic demographic data collection, analysis, and reporting of outcomes.

Community, Equity and Climate Update

The Office of Equity also worked closely with partners from Health Action Together (HAT), formerly Health Action, to thoroughly examine the data gaps highlighted through the Portrait of Sonoma 2021 Update. Data included in the Portrait was insufficient in capturing important community voices such as people with disabilities, transgender and non-binary communities, Native American/Indigenous and Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander populations, and other Indigenous, undocumented, and immigrant communities. Since these key populations and others were missing from the Portrait narrative, it became clear more work was needed to build relationships and collaboration with those populations, so they can tell their own stories of what they see and need in their respective communities. Two Office of Equity staff serve on the HAT Board, which approved a contract to begin developing an Agenda for Action and to focus on the communities who experience lowest Heath Development Index (HDI) scores in our County and to review existing data, engage in data validation, and create an actionable plan to change existing outcomes.

Funding Narrative

The Office of Equity received funding for two positions in this year’s Strategic Funding cycle, one permanent (FTE 1.0) Strategic Planning PPEA and one time-limited (FTE 1.0) Anti-Racist Results-Based Accountability PPEA.