PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — In July 2021, the city and county of Peoria launched the Peoria Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity. Comprised of 160 Peoria County residents, they investigated and proposed plans on issues related to racial justice and equity.

Through their first phase, which took a year and a half to complete, the commission found data that shows Peoria County has room to grow when it comes to inequities.

“The report that we’re providing to you today is not a flattering account of the city and county of Peoria. It has, in the words of one of the city council members, sobering data about where we’re at,” said Tim Bertschy, co-chair of the commission.

Nine committees were formed through the joint commission proven in Peoria. That included a Steering Committee, responsible for governing the process and progress of the commission, as well as:

  1. Child & youth development
  2. Economic development & jobs
  3. Environment & climate
  4. Health & human services
  5. Housing
  6. Information & technology
  7. Justice system
  8. Transportation & mobility

In every aspect, the Black and Hispanic communities are unequal to their White counterparts.

The group’s goal is to end racism in the city and county government to achieve racial equity and justice in the community. They are commencing their second phase, although there is no definitive timeline. The commission hopes to get its feet on the ground as soon as possible.

To get involved with the commission, click here.

The full report is below: