ECC Economic Inclusion Director Addresses Urban Sustainability Directors

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ECC Economic Inclusion Director Sarah Robinson described ECC’s work, its role in creating sustainable, just and inclusive economies with the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN) during a fall 2016 Sustainable Economic Development Workshop hosted by USDN and the International Economic Development CouncilSarah Robinson

USDN formulated an equity agenda and affinity group within the network, with the goal of including community residents in the planning process. ECC has been supporting this work by expanding USDN’s capacity to adopt a high-road model, given that most environmental and sustainable development projects do not include an economic inclusion component 

Additionally, USDN is working with ECC to better understand our inclusion platform and the tools and strategies for ensuring that disadvantaged populations benefit from USDN efforts.

As part of this work, ECC hosted a webinar on economic inclusion for USDN members, so they could better understand the why, how and what of economic inclusion. In addition to ECC national staff, the webinar presenters included two USDN peers who have adopted and implemented ECC’s Economic Inclusion Program locally -- Los Angeles County Office of Sustainability General Manager Howard Choy and Cuyahoga County Deputy Director of Sustainability Shanelle Smith.

USDN is a peer-to-peer network of local government professionals from the United States and Canada dedicated to creating a healthier environment, economic prosperity and increased social equity. Its 135-plus members represent cities and counties with more than 70 million residents. USDN uses the connections fostered by its network to help cities of all sizes lead the way in developing the next generation of sustainable communities. According to its strategic plan, USDN’s “ultimate goal is to accelerate effective urban sustainability outcomes at scale.”

At the USDN conference, Robinson outlined the accomplishments in several ECC sites – Cleveland and Cuyahoga County, Los Angeles County, Oakland, and Seattle – as well as in New Orleans, where the city government contracted with ECC to provide economic inclusion (EI) services. 


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