Campaign for Fair Latino Representation
Advocating for the full inclusion of Latinos in New York City government 

These recommendations were first presented to Mayor de Blasio in a May 19, 2014 memo. Since that date, the Campaign has contiuously sought to get a response from the de Blasio Administration to the suggestions made below in order to begin a serious dialogue about how best to address this problem of Latino underrepresentation in city government. These recommendations are presented in two parts: 1. The Appointments Process, and 2. Overall Municipa Employment. We would be interested in getting your feedback on these ideas by writing

The Appointments Process. We recommend that the Latino members of your Transition Team serve as a formal advisory group to the Executive Director of your Office of Appointments as it develops a Latino initiative..

1. Is there sufficient staff in the Appointments Office that is knowledgeable about and have extensive experience with the Latino community and its potential sources of candidates, both formal and informal?

2. We would like to recommend an assessment of the approaches being used by the Appointments Office to the recruitment of Latino talent for the Administration. These would center on the following questions we have:

3. What has been the Appointments Office’s strategy for Latino outreach in terms of the media, unions and community-based organizations? What are the Latino contacts that they have been utilizing? Has the Appointments Office been sufficiently cognizant of the diversity of the Latino community and the value of its being reflected in appointments?

4. Has the Appointments Office been utilizing head hunters and other employment specialists with proven track records of recruitment in the Latino community?

5. Can your Administration conduct an assessment of why the Appointments Office has not been able to more fully include Latinos in the appointments to date, identifying problems and opportunities for change?

6. Does the Appointments Office have or plans to develop a campaign in the Latino community to promote the importance of careers with city government in the Latino community, by reaching out to professional organizations, community-based organizations, colleges and universities, etc.?

7. The Appointments Office needs to develop specific strategies for outreach for members for the city’s many boards and commissions in the Latino community. A good starting point would be a public analysis of the racial-ethnic composition of current board and commission memberships.

8. Can the Latino members of your Transition Team receive regular written reports from the Appointments Office on their outreach efforts, number of Latino applicants and hires, available positions and a summary of reasons for not approving of applicants?

Overall Municipal Employment. The long-term underutilization of Latinos in the municipal work force indicates that the city government’s diversity mechanisms and processes have not been working when it comes to our community. There is an urgent need to reassess the city’s work force diversity efforts as they relate to the Latino community as well as newly-emerging communities.

Through these recommendations, our purpose is to address these goals:

    ■Increase the representation of Latinos at all levels of and across all agencies of city government until we at least reach parity with our community’s representation in the civilian labor force of the city.
    ■Develop mechanism for the coordination of these efforts and provide accountability to the Latino community.
    ■Promote a critical review of current equal employment opportunity policies and procedures to develop more effective approaches to promoting greater Latino inclusion in the city government work force.
    ■Increase the transparency of city government’s efforts at Latino inclusion in the municipal work force and ts overall equal employment opportunity programs, policies and data.
    ■Develop a robust pipeline of Latino talent that can be recruited and hired in city government.
    ■Develop incentives for city managers for more aggressively and creatively promoting work force diversity in their agencies. 

In terms of the city’s work force diversity program we recommend that:

1. Create Latino Diversity Task Force under the leadership of the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services to oversee the development of new approaches to Latino inclusion in your Administration and provide you with ongoing feedback on progress being made in this area. 

     a. The Campaign for Fair Latino Representation would like to be integrated into this Task Force’s work 
         on an ongoing basis to monitor progress being made. 

2. A critical review of the role of the key diversity agencies is long overdue: the Department of Citywide Administration Services, the Equal Employment Practices Commission, the Commission on Human Rights and the Civil Service Commission. The city’s diversity programs have become many too passive, defensive operations and do not have the authority or mission to promote aggressively work force diversity. Surprisingly, both the Commission on Human Rights and Civil Service Commissions, for example, currently have no Latinos on them.

3. The diversity work force data and plans of each agency should be made transparent both centrally and for each agency individually. The Department of Citywide Administration Services, in discussions with the National Institute for Latino Policy, has already moved to reverse the previous administration’s removal of the city’s EEO-4 data from and is now reposting that information on its website. This is a good first start, but we recommend that the city mandate that each city agency, board and commission provide both EEO data and the diversity plans on each of their websites on an annual basis to increase their accountability on this issue..

4. Each agency commissioner and head should be made responsible to develop plans for the desegregation of their agencies and to promote the full diversity of their work forces. The Administration for Children’s Services has reported that they are developing approaches to this that we recommend you review for possible replication across agencies. This should include promoting agency plans for both internal vertical and horizontal work force mobility as well as outreach to underutilized communities.

    a. Each head of a city agency should be required to hold a major meeting with their agencies major 
        Latino stakeholders to discuss Latino community concerns about staffing, resource allocation and 
        other issues.

    b. Each city agency should be required to establish employee affinity groups for Latinos and other 
        protected classes, and a citywide coordinating body based in the Mayor’s Office.  

5. The promotion of work force diversity should be made a core value of your Administration and your managers should receive incentives for progress they make in this area. As recognition of the importance of diversity for your Administration, we recommend that it be added as an indicator in the Mayor’s Management Report.

6. Serious attention needs to be given to pipeline development issues for Latinos coming into the city government’s work force. We recommend that you develop an inventory of the various internship, fellowship and related programs that seek to develop and recruit new talent to see how they have been utilizing Latinos. Are existing programs doing an effective job? Do they need to be reorganized, or new programs be recruited? Is the city fully utilizing the potential role that the City University of New York and the Department of Education can play in promoting public service among the city’s Latino youth?

In developing these recommendations, we have met with various members of your Administration and have consulted with a wide range of Latino community leaders and advocates. We think they represent a good starting point for reversing the more than two decades of Latino marginalization from the municipal work force and policymaking process. We expect that your team would have additional ideas that we would be interested in hearing as well. But we would like to stress that your direct intervention at this point is essential as a sign that you share the importance and urgency of this issue with us.
Our Recommendations to NYC Mayor de Blasio