OCFS Equity and Justice Pledge

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National Day of Racial Healing

This year, on January 16, 2024, communities across the country participated in the National Day of Racial Healing, a day held to acknowledge the values we share, build trust in each other, form genuine connections and inspire collective action that furthers #HowWeHeal from the effects of racism. OCFS has joined this effort and recognizes that racial healing requires a commitment to equity and justice, as well as continuous concrete action that confronts the stain of racial injustice.

OCFS invites all New Yorkers to commit to action by taking the statewide Equity and Justice Pledge. A joint effort between OCFS and the NYS Division of Human Rights, this pledge provides a framework of action for all who wish to fight injustice, hate and bias by orienting themselves towards equity and justice.

To assist with your commitment to action and journey towards racial healing, the Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility has created a discussion guide to the Pledge.

OCFS Equity and Justice Pledge

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day and the National Day of Racial Healing, the New York State Office of Children and Family Services is issuing a call to action. This call to action will also complement New York State’s anti-hate and bias awareness campaign that will be launched by the Division of Human Rights later this year. By taking this pledge, you join the movement to eliminate hate and bias, prevent discrimination, promote inclusion and serve the needs of your community. I hereby pledge…

  1. to acknowledge the existence and intergenerational impacts of injustice, hate, prejudice, and systemic racism, and to continually educate myself and others about these issues;
  2. to understand that all forms of inequality are mutually reinforcing and to work to eradicate all forms of inequity, division, and discrimination;
  3. to combat intolerance and drive out fear by actively creating an environment of safety, justice, and equity wherever I am;
  4. to renounce and confront bigotry, extremism, and hateful language and behavior whenever I witness its occurrence;
  5. to remain committed to reducing implicit biases and other forms of discrimination;
  6. to lead with compassion and allow my learning and actions to be informed by empathy, love, and respect for all individuals;
  7. to mobilize the time, resources, and abilities at my disposal in pursuit of these goals; and
  8. to listen to those who are victimized by hate and bias, lend my support, and respect the rights of victims to speak for themselves.

After signing this pledge, please return a copy to OCFS ODEIA at ocfs.sm.DEIA@ocfs.ny.gov so that we can stay in touch and support you!