The Center for Elimination of Disproportionality and Disparities grounds its work, at both the state and regional levels in a model that guides state planning, operations, and the development of effective collaborations across systems and meaningful community partnerships. It has five components:
The Texas model is not a linear, step-by-step process; rather, each component works in support of the others. Each component is critical to addressing racial disproportionality and disparities.
Advancing Data Driven Strategies
Strategies to address and eliminate disproportionality and disparities should be evaluated using accurate and reliable data. Agencies should collect baseline data for informing intervention strategies and use appropriate research methods to conduct evaluations to assess impact. It is important that agencies collect and report all outcome data by race and ethnicity to determine the impact of services on diverse population groups. These data are compared to general population data to identify disproportionality. Disparity rates, or relative rate indexes, are also calculated, generally using White rates as a reference group, consistent with social science literature. Agencies share these data transparently with communities, especially those most affected by an agency's programs.
Eliminating disproportionality and disparities requires effective leadership throughout every organization, agency, and community. Developing leaders include administrative and frontline staff, middle managers, executive management, and every position in between. Racial equity work requires humility, accountability, and transparency from all, key characteristic of people who grow into leaders. Leaders in racial equity work recognize that it is a collective, continuing process.
Collaborating Across Systems
Collaborating across systems involves building and maintaining networks and coalitions of gatekeepers and advocates that are representative of culturally diverse populations, and who are seeking effective and sustainable solutions across traditional institutional lines. These collaborations may take many forms but should focus their efforts on improving access to services. Data should be examined by race and ethnicity, and current approaches and innovations should be monitored and evaluated and shared with communities.
The community should be included in dialogues, discussions, planning, and decision-making in efforts that will affect them. Effective community engagement involves mutual accountability. Agency leaders and communities respectfully support each other and recognize their common interests.
Promoting Work Defined by Race Equity Principles
Race equity principles are tools used to move from the status quo toward systems that treat everyone with equity and dignity. Concepts of fairness and justice guide all programs, policies, and practices, which are designed to eliminate institutional barriers to equity. Services should be responsive to the cultural beliefs and needs of racial and ethnic groups and should be provided in an equitable, understandable and respectful manner. Racial equity is the ultimate goal of eliminating disproportionality and disparities, and these principles support that transformation of systems for the provision of effective and quality services for all.
Evaluation and Transformation
The Texas model supports transformation of systems and requires evaluation rooted in solid social science. Every initiative, program, and policy is consistently evaluated for equity and effectiveness. Data evaluation findings are shared with communities, systems, and other partners, with the aim of learning from each other’s successes and challenges. These findings should also be used to inform policies, practices and to improve service delivery. Achieving racial equity in human services represents a transformation from the current system to one that functions with fairness and respect for all.
For more information, email CEDD@hhsc.state.tx.us.