Chicago Urban League Releases 10-year Plan for Racial Equity

Shari Runner, Chicago Urban League President and CEO
Shari Runner, Chicago Urban League President and CEO

The Chicago Urban League released its 10-year plan to attack structural racism and achieve racial equality for African-Americans on Wednesday.

The organization says its Blueprint for an Equitable Chicago: A 10-Year Plan is designed to improve opportunities for residents living within the city’s most underserved communities, which it identified in a previous research study. The Impact of Chicago’s Racial Residential Segregation on Residence, Housing and Transportation, which was released this March, examines segregation and its impact on Chicago’s residence, housing, and transportation.

“There’s a lot of great working being done by organizations across the city in trying to address the systemic socioeconomic issues that our communities face; however, dismantling structural racism requires a critical, collective effort,” said Shari Runner, President and CEO, Chicago Urban League. “It is with this sense of urgency that Blueprint for an Equitable Chicago provides concrete strategies with measurable outcomes to drive policies and practices that advance racial equity.”

The Chicago Urban League says the first phase of its plan is currently underway and will continue through July 2018. It includes analyzing the Chicago’s current landscape and identifying those it considers to be “community champions.”

“Our vision is that by 2026, residents of every community area in Chicago will have access to the services and supports they need not just to succeed, but to really thrive as members of the greater Chicago community,” said Dr. Bechteler.“The League’s 10-Year Plan is a focused effort that lays out our commitment to making racial equity a reality. When this happens, it sets the stage for a stronger African-American community; and that, in turn, makes a stronger Chicago.”

A key aspect of the plan, the organization says, is collaborations with other community entities. For organizations interested in joining forces with the League and its partners, please contact Stephanie Schmitz Bechteler, Ph. D., Vice President and Executive Director of the Research and Policy Center, Chicago Urban League, at

Download a full copy of the report here.

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