We have just released a new Boys and Men of Color Indicator Guide, which identifies the focus indicators for various local and national initiatives to improve the lives of boys and men of color and describes why each indicator is important.
The launch of the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) initiative by President Obama early last year marked a significant milestone in the movement to improve outcomes for boys and men of color in the U.S. The President’s announcement is helping to bring much needed public attention and catalyzing efforts to improve outcomes for boys and men of color in education, health, employment, income and criminal justice. Before the President announced MBK, however, a number of national and local efforts were already underway to improve outcomes for boys and men of color, including the work of the National League of Cities’ City Leadership to Promote Black Male Achievement , the Open Society Institute’s Black Male Achievement Initiative, and the California Endowment’s Sons and Brothers Initiative.
One component common to all of the current efforts to improve outcomes for boys and men of color (BMoC) has been the identification of key indicators, which focus attention on a set of common outcomes to drive action and assess progress. While each of the BMoC initiatives has developed somewhat different indicators, they share a focus on improving outcomes in some common areas, including early childhood education, early elementary proficiency in reading and math, high school graduation, post-secondary education and training, quality employment, and involvement in the criminal justice system.
Urban Strategies Council and our local partners in the Oakland-Alameda County Alliance for Boys and Men of Color have worked to identify local indicators and to gather other important data related to outcomes for BMoC in Oakland and Alameda County. In addition to conducting research to better understand how BMoC are faring in a variety of areas of life, we have also produced a profile of BMoC in Oakland and Alameda County.
Since Oakland is a participant in several of the national and state initiatives for BMoC, and in an effort to understand where Oakland and Alameda County stand on the various indicators for BMoC, we developed our BMoC Indicator Guide, which allows comparison of indicators chosen by each initiative, links each indicator to available local and national data, and explains why each indicator is relevant to the well-being of Boys and Men of Color.