CWU News

CWU Board of Trustees to Pursue More Equitable Practices by Adopting Executive Order

The CWU Employees of Color Equity Council

The CWU Employees of Color Equity Council was formed to promote a more diverse workforce at the university.

The Central Washington University Board of Trustees today adopted a new resolution, seeking to reinforce the importance of promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives. Resolution 22-02 clarifies the university’s rules for contracting under Initiative 200 and follows Governor Inslee’s signing last month of Executive Order 22-02: Achieving Equity in Washington State Government.

“Adopting the provisions of the governor’s order helps dismantle discrimination and institutional and systemic barriers, which is our duty as a public university,” President Jim Wohlpart said after the Board of Trustees’ quarterly meeting in Ellensburg. “We want to do our part to ensure that everyone has equal access to opportunities in education, in business and in all Washington communities.” 

By adopting the resolution, the Board of Trustees has directed the university to improve diversity in public contracting, provide equity in public employment, support student access and success, and promote equity and inclusion.

The intent of Governor Inslee’s executive order is to declare that every Washington resident deserves a fair chance to live life to the fullest, regardless of race, ethnicity, creed, color, national origin, citizenship or immigration status, sex, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation, or the presence of sensory, mental, or physical disability.

“I recognize the traumatic and long-lasting impacts of discrimination, racism, and oppression,” Inslee said in the order. “I also recognize that Washington state government has the responsibility and ability to make a difference for all of us. … This order, alone, will not create equity in our state, but this is a necessary next step.”

Seeking to improve diversity in the public contracting process, CWU will leverage the state’s Tools for Equity in Public Spending, which are designed to support the implementation of the Roadmap to Contracting Equity, in response to the 2019 Statewide Disparity Study. The university will work to provide equity in public employment by continuing to address and dismantle inequitable systems and practices in the workplace. 

In addition, CWU will prepare a report describing the differences in patterns of access and success across student sub-populations, employee equity demographics, and the scope and progress of existing programs designed to identify and remedy discrimination. The university also will improve access to state services by reducing barriers and eliminating inequities in all aspects of decision-making, including service delivery, program development, policy development, staffing, and budgeting.

Media contact: Linda Schactler, chief of staff and secretary to the board, 509-607-4103.