It is the unfortunate reality that every American metropolitan area struggles with income inequality, concentrated poverty, unequal incarceration rates, disparate health outcomes, and poor overall quality of life for people of color. Milwaukee is not unique in the comprehensive issues faced by its communities of color, now the majority population in the County per the 2020 census. To this end, in 2022, the County formed its Office of Equity (OoE). OoE plays a critical role in recognizing and resolving the County’s racial inequities and provides advice, guidance, training, and technical assistance to normalize, operationalize, and institutionalize racial equity within the County’s operations, policy, and programs.

OoE builds upon the work of the County’s Office on African American Affairs which enabled the County to pass a first-of-its-kind resolution declaring racism and is now empowered to drive Milwaukee County’s efforts to shift its institutional power and dismantle racist policies and practices. FUSE will partner with Milwaukee County to increase coordination and build enterprise-wide and regional capacity to advance health and racial equity throughout all 19 municipalities in Milwaukee County. FUSE will evaluate the County’s ecosystem of equity initiatives, support racial equity capacity building across County departments, strategy teams, special initiatives, and municipalities, and help implement strategies grounded in a county-wide shared vision of equity, strengthening the County’s internal and regional racial equity infrastructure.