Urban Strategies Council and the Oakland-Alameda County Alliance for Boys and Men of Color (BMoC) are excited about the President’s announcement of the launch of a new initiative, My Brother’s Keeper, focused on improving outcomes for boys and men of color. For over three years, the Oakland-Alameda County Alliance for Boys and Men of Color (BMoC) has been committed to the implementation of an action agenda to improve outcomes for BMoC across the life cycle. The local BMoC Alliance is comprised of City and County public systems leaders and California Endowment staff who compose our BMoC Leadership Table, as well as community-based nonprofit organizations and faith-based leaders who make up our BMoC Community Partners Table. These tables are collectively focused on creating strategies and solutions that will better the lives of BMoC in Oakland and Alameda County.

Currently, our collaborative is focused on identifying and implementing methods by which public agencies can increase their capacities to better serve all BMoC by working across systems and with community partners to support the health, education and career employment for BMoC. Addressing issues such as common metrics and data sharing, identifying and expanding programs that work and addressing policy barriers to success, this table recognizes the importance of structural and systems reform to sustainable improvements in outcomes for BMoC.

As we think about promising practices and solutions for BMoC, it is important that we consider and are inclusive of the needs of ALL boys and men of color in California. The Oakland-Alameda County Alliance for BMoC is dedicated to developing targeted programs and strategies that benefit all the major ethnic groups – Latino, African American, Asian and Pacific Islander, and Native BMoC in the City and County.  During the press conference last week, the President emphasized Latinos and African Americans and the administrative order also includes Native Americans.  We believe it is important that we not overlook the challenges that many Asian and Pacific Islander boys and men share with Latino, Black and Native. One of our California Alliance for Boys and Men of Color partners, Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC), is working to address the needs of Southeast Asian communities as well as raise our awareness of the many sub-populations within the API community and the need for disaggregated data which better reflect the challenges and successes of the API community.  For more information, see the SEARAC website:  http://www.searac.org/.

Additionally, here are a few reports that also highlight data around the API community and API boys and men.
http://aapip.org/publications/widening-the-lens-on-boys-and-men-of-color,
http://advancingjustice-la.org/system/files/Communities_of_Contrast_California_2013.pdf

In the next few weeks, we will post a series of blogs to provide a deeper focus on the work of the Oakland-Alameda County Alliance for BMoC and its alignment with the outcomes of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative.