Diversity Equity and Inclusion Conference
The City of Charlotte is excited to host its first Diversity Equity and Inclusion Conference in April 2019. The Charlotte Diversity Equity and Inclusion Conference will be the first of its kind in North Carolina; on April 14-April 17, 2019, we plan to bring together a diverse group of people and presenters who are subject matter experts in their respective fields. When most people envision a "Diversity Equity and Inclusion Conference" they tend to think about issues surrounding race and gender. While race and gender demographics are certainly part of this dialogue, this conference will promote a multi-faceted discussion including recruitment, legal issues, cultural diversity, and human relations.
Public safety is continuously changing; an overall goal and theme of the conference is "transition and change". We all like comfort zones and tend to guide our organizations by conducting "business as usual". However, that which feels comfortable can often stagnate and hinder organizational growth. Success mandates that we cannot keep doing things the same way and expect different results. As part of this conference, we will explore ways to breakdown both organizational and personal barriers that relate to diversity and inclusion so we can fully identify obstacles to both organizational and personal success.
This conference will be the first of its kind in Charlotte and we hope to make it an annual event. All stakeholders are committed to the following:
- Developing programs that increase the awareness of cultural diversity, improve human relations, and foster equal opportunity and affirmative action;
- Create an environment free of discrimination, harassment and intimidation;
- Assure each individual the opportunity to achieve his/her highest potential;
- Establish an atmosphere that instills ethical practices and produces quality leadership
Public safety leaders nationwide have realized there is a serious need for education and training related to diversity, inclusiveness, and acceptance; it is no different in Mecklenburg County. Today, more than ever, education and dialogue is needed to appropriately address all the concerns and issues that still exist in the organizations that we serve. It is not uncommon to hear about an employer engaging in discrimination practices when recruiting job candidates, when advertising for a job, or during applicant testing. Sometimes the bias is implicit, sometimes even accidental. The goal of this conference is to make participants aware of certain issues, have sensitive discussions, and give participants methods for addressing these issues in the most appropriate means. This conference is geared toward community leaders, political advocates, public safety servants, and recruiters. We sincerely hope that this conference will provide an ongoing platform to continue the dialogue and find creative ways to enhance the inclusiveness and diversity within our respective organizations
It will be a wonderful opportunity to discuss what other public safety agencies are experiencing, hear organizational success stories, and examine the various different facets of how we can deal with and overcome adversity to improve our efforts. Guest speakers will discuss issues ranging from how we define diversity (spoiler alert, it is not only related to race), recruitment efforts to improve diversity, legal issues, and many other topics.