October 8, 2020 – San Diego, CA – The San Diego Foundation today announced its support of Proposition 16, a state initiative on the November 3 ballot that aims to strengthen equity across California.

The decision by The San Diego Foundation Board of Governors to publicly support Proposition 16 reflects the organization’s ongoing commitment to an inclusive community and equity in all aspects of society.

In 1996, through the passage of Proposition 209, California voters banned consideration of race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin in public systems, such as public employment, public education, and public contracting in the state. Since then, research has revealed that many underrepresented communities are falling further behind their traditionally well-represented peers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women are paid, on average, 82 cents for every dollar paid to men. That number decreases even more when comparing women of color and white women. Additionally, research from the Urban Institute reveals that Black and Latinx Californians are consistently unrepresented in the state’s universities yet overrepresented among unemployed residents. Proposition 16 aims to repeal the 1996 law, recognizing that the state of California and society as a whole has more work to do to address the inequities that exist in our community.

Sponsored by Assemblywoman Dr. Shirley Weber, a longtime champion for social and racial justice in San Diego and California, Proposition 16 will help increase opportunities and representation for people who face long-standing inequities as a result of their race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin. If approved by voters in November, Proposition 16 will enable state and local agencies to establish equity-driven policies and programs that are consistent with federal and state law related to equal protection.

The following is a statement from Mark Stuart, President & CEO of The San Diego Foundation:

“The events of 2020 have clearly demonstrated that we need to do more to increase equity in our community.  Proposition 16 will help realize a future where everyone has the opportunity to achieve their full potential in San Diego and California. Progress is possible when we all come together to work toward a more equitable San Diego and when our public policies and programs reflect that commitment.”