Equity in Place

Equity in Place is a diverse group of strategic partners from organizations led by people of color and housing advocacy organizations that believe that everyone in the Twin Cities region deserves to live where they want to live and have access to opportunity.

Equity in Place influences planning and investments to ensure that people of color and low-wealth people have a role in shaping the future of the Twin Cities region.

Our coalition has ensured that regional planners acknowledge the role of institutional racism in current and historical development decisions, that people of color have a seat at the table in important discussions about the future of our region, and that residents have an avenue to participate in discussions about the future of their communities.

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  • We must create genuine, authentic access to all forms of opportunity in every geography and with/for every cultural community in our region.
  • Proximity does not equal access.
  • Advocacy on issues (such as housing, community development, and gentrification) that most impact people of color and indigenous communities must be done by leading with a lens and understanding of racism and power.
  • To correctly solve for a problem, you must correctly identify the problem – and its root causes. People most impacted by the problems must define the solutions.
  • “The problem is not race, the problem is racism.” The inequities in our communities are not the result of the presence or concentration of people of color and low wealth people, but rather due to structural and institutional racism and decades of disinvestment.
  • People of color and indigenous people are not a problem to be solved. White supremacy and unfettered capitalism are problems to be solved.
  • Concentrations of people of color are not the problem. A neighborhood which is predominantly Latino, Hmong, Somali, and African-American cannot be considered segregated, especially if a community that is 90+% European-American is not.
  • We got here, to our racial disparities, by the largely intentional choices of those in power. The only way out is through intentional and overt decisions that take us in a different direction.
  • We are conscious that racism intersects with other forces such as sexism, classism, xenophobia, discrimination against unrecognized citizens, religious minority persecution, homophobia, ableism, and transphobia. We strive to hold these distinct intersections in our mind as we do our work.

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  • Our table consists of grassroots organizers, lawyers, coalition organizers, housing advocates, community developers, and others. All contribute in important, powerful ways to the work and to our collective body of knowledge.
  • Working across race, geography, and culture is essential to building coalitional power that connects different experiences and perspectives as we make demands of systems. This work requires constant learning, adapting, and expanding of our relationships and narratives.
  • We will center the voices, perspectives, and narratives of people of color both internally in our coalition spaces and externally in our organizing and advocacy work.
  • Power comes from the strength of our relationships. By developing an understanding of selfinterest and building a shared analysis, we can take more powerful collective action.
  • Trusting relationships are necessary in order to understand one another’s interests and responses. Trust is built through intentional relationship building and nurturing throughout the process of working together.
  • Our table and coalition spaces should reflect the changes we want to see in the outside world and particularly in systems of power. We are intentional about moving away from the cultures of white supremacy and patriarchy in how we relate to each other and how we conduct our meetings. This is a constant iterative learning process.
  • Important decisions and strategic directions must be made collectively, transparently, with broad coalitional participation and support.
  • We must be willing to name and wrestle with tension as it comes up both inside of our coalition and in our work.
  • We value humor. Our work is difficult and serious. Laughing together can be a way to heal, build relationships, and generally enjoy our time together.
  • We believe in collective evaluation, reflection, and growth. This is essential for EIP to continue to evolve, make space for new partners, and ensure our work is constructive and powerful.

Informed by communities most impacted by housing injustice and instability, Equity in Place identified four areas for housing policy change, including housing access, housing stability, community ownership and community investment. In our 2019-2020 Policy Agenda, we outline the specific policy solutions we recommend, including the impact, examples and resources for each.

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