Students walking at MHCC's Gresham Campus

Equity Lens Tool

The MHCC Board of Directors has approved an Equity Lens Tool that will be used in college decision-making as a tool for examining the impact of race in problem identification, solution development, and success of outcomes. The goal is to be intentionally inclusive in our decision-making process and reflect on how our institutional policies and processes might be inherently biased or racist.

Race and Intersectionality

  • Who are the racial/ethnic and underserved groups affected?
  • What is the potential impact of the decision, resource allocation, and/or strategic investment to these groups?
  • What is the racial makeup of the decision makers?

Challenge the Dominant Culture/Status Quo

  • How does the proposed policy, decision, program, and/or practice challenge the way we have addressed the issue in the past?
  • What barriers (institutional, structural, intrapersonal, interpersonal) may exist that could hinder implementation?
  • Is the college committed to prioritize, publicize, and sustain these efforts?

Commitment to Social Justice

  • What is the potential impact on eliminating any existing opportunity or outcome gaps?
  • Might the decision being made ignore or worsen existing disparities or produce other unintended consequences? How could these impacts be mitigated?
  • How does the policy, decision, program, practice build community capacity and power in communities most affected by inequities?

Including the Voices of those Most Impacted

  • Have we solicited and received input from students and others closest to the issue?
  • How are we meaningfully including or excluding people who are affected?
  • Is there stakeholder support or opposition to the proposal, and if so, why?
  • What process will we use to check back in with the stakeholders as part of a feedback loop?

Using Data to Inform

  • What baseline data do you have, and how will you utilize quantitative and qualitative data to measure impact on non-dominant groups?
  • How will you use data to modify or enhance your strategies to achieve the intended outcomes?

Why do We Need an Equity Lens?

  • To ensure we keep race and intersectionality at the center of considerations for our organizational decision-making, policies, practices, and procedures.
  • To ensure we are effectively and persistently challenging the dominant ideology and status quo of White supremacy.
  • To establish an institutional commitment to social justice, and do no further harm to historically and contemporaneously marginalized humans and groups.
  • To center the experiences of students and our communities in service to becoming a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive organization.
  • To use data and diverse perspectives as part of the organizational transformation.

Take the next step at Mt. Hood Community College