Advancing Racial Health Equity

Advancing Racial & Health Equity & Shared Community Power

Ramsey County will develop a countywide approach to improve race-based disproportional outcomes by deconstructing systemic and institutional barriers to be more fair, inclusive and transparent in how we share decision-making power with residents, communities and employees to build a more equitable organization.  

Why this is a priority

Ramsey County has a vision for a vibrant community where all are valued and thrive but has some of the worst racial inequities in the country, especially for Black and American Indian residents. To achieve equitable outcomes for all, Ramsey County must assess policies and practices rooted in institutional and structural racism while sharing decision making power with residents and communities, especially racial and ethnic groups who are experiencing racial inequities.

During COVID-19 Ramsey County created the Racial Equity and Community Engagement Response Team (RECERT) who worked alongside community members from the Equity Action Circle (EAC) to address racial inequities during the pandemic. RECERT and EAC initiatives were supported with over $4M of CARES and ARPA funding. EAC members developed recommendations that Ramsey County departments have implemented or are in the process of implementing. RECERT helped increase community and civic engagement by hosting over 15 virtual townhalls with over 1,000 cumulative attendees. In 2020 a third Racial and Health Equity Administrator was added, and the Health and Wellness Service Team added ten Racial and Health Equity Liaison Planners. Ramsey County will continue to involve racially diverse community groups and residents as programs and policies are being developed and administered.



Rondo Days

Racial equity and shared power

Honoring racially and ethnically diverse knowledge and wisdom from our community of residents, businesses and employees before budgetary investments, program decisions or new projects are launched helps build trust and is critical to helping actively involve our most impacted communities in creating a better future, where all are valued and thrive. A broad range of resources and tools, including participatory methods and leadership accountability at all levels in organizational planning needs to be applied to structurally advance racial equity and measure outcomes.

Recognition dinner
Washington Tech student election judges

Key actions and projects

Ramsey County will:

  • Ensure all current and new employees complete the county’s six-hour Foundational Racial Equity in Action training, micro-aggression training, and bias training by the end of 2023.
  • Develop a countywide racial equity work plan that includes input from residents and employees.
  • Develop a racial equity budgeting tool that will help provide racial equity impacts for budgeting decisions.
  • Develop process to increase community representation on hiring interview panels.
  • Develop a county-wide definition of “culturally specific services” that is derived from input of racially and ethnically diverse community groups.

Outcomes and measures

  • Percentage of employees who complete racial equity trainings.
  • Percentage of new employees who complete racial equity training.
  • Number of interview panels with residents on interview panel.
  • Number of community included in interview panels.

Transforming Systems Together

Transforming Systems Together (TST) is a shared decision-making initiative of community members and Ramsey County to rethink how the county delivers services and invests in community. 

Learn more

Mississippi river skyline footer banner