Equity | United Way of Genesee County

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Equity

The color of your skin, your family lineage, your zip code should help influence your successes, not dictate them. People should not be defined by their DNA, but by the impact they make in this world. In order to move towards a culture where people are seen by their impact; we must create an equitable society. While change has happened focus must not just be on creating an equal opportunity society, but an equitable equal opportunity society.  

United Way of Genesee County condemns racism and oppression toward black, indigenous, and all people of color. We are working to create a just and equitable society where everyone can thrive.

Equity, Equality - What’s the Difference? 

Equality in communities means every person is receiving the same level of support to achieve an outcome. Society achieves equality by giving the same things to all people regardless of individual needs/circumstances. At its very basic definition some examples of equality means every child has access to a public education; every person has water to drink; and, every person has a roof over their head. If the goal is only focused on equality, in these examples only the homeless would not be treated equally. 

While...

Equity goes much deeper. Equity is providing various levels of support based on the needs of each unique individual to achieve stronger fairer outcomes. In order for us to achieve an equitable society, one must understand each other’s circumstances and provide the unique supports they need to achieve the outcome. Public schooling is not just available, but tailored to each student with the resources to meet needs. Water is not just in homes, but it’s clean and affordable. Equity promotes fairness and justice through systemic change, not just “checking a box”. 

Equality aims to promote fairness, but it can only work if everyone starts from the same place and needs the same aid. We know this is not the case for communities. Equity actively moves everyone closer to success, providing unique individualized supports. Equality can be easy to achieve, but to create true equity it requires a deep look in oneself and the systems around. Once the lack of an equitable society is understood by those in power (at all levels), people can join together to create systemic change that will truly create an equal community where everyone starts from the same place.