California State PTA is proud to support Proposition 16 to provide equity in state hiring, contracting, and education.
Unfortunately, racism and sexism still deny equal opportunities in California. Everyone deserves the opportunity to succeed – regardless of their gender, what they look like, or where they were born.
This constitutional amendment asks the voters of California to vote on permitting the use of race, gender, and ethnic diversity as factors (but not decisive factors) in education including college admissions, government hiring, and government contracting. This measure repeals Prop. 29, which banned consideration of these factors in public employment, public education, and public contracting.
California State PTA believes in equity in every aspect of life for all children and youth, and effective governance systems and practices that are rooted in social justice to serve the needs of children, youth and families.
PTA was established to secure adequate laws for the care and protection of children, youth and families. We must address a legacy of unequal treatment of marginalized groups and promote fairness and advance upward mobility, pay equity, and racial wealth gap reduction.
A Bit of History
Proposition 209 – In 1996, California voters banned consideration of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in public employment, public education, and public contracting by passing Proposition 209. This made California one of the few states in the nation to prohibit this consideration.
Federal law and most states allow policies and programs that consider race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin. Before Proposition 209, California supported policies and programs intended to increase opportunities and representation for people who faced inequalities.
What’s the Problem?
Discrimination – “A recent study from the Economic Policy Institute showed that Black workers are twice as likely to be unemployed, and that a similar disparity exists among college-educated Black workers and their white counterparts. Source: CA Senate Analysis
Gender Pay Gap – “On average, women make 82 cents for every dollar earned by men. If the United States maintains the current level of progress towards pay equity, it will take until 2059 to achieve pay equity for women. Yet, this figure obscures the racial and ethnic component of pay equity: Black women will not achieve pay equity with white men until 2130 and Latinas will not achieve pay equity with white men until 2224.” Source: CA Senate Analysis
Unequal Society – “The data suggests that we live in a deeply unequal society, where the tools to compete in society are unevenly distributed and distributed in a manner that perpetuates inequality between races and genders at all levels of class and society.” Senate Committee on Labor, Public Employment and Retirement
Education – “UC’s many years of effort and experimentation with a wide variety of race-neutral approaches demonstrates that, at least under current circumstances in California, highly competitive public universities cannot maintain historic levels of diversity within their student bodies—much less reflect in their student bodies a growing state population of underrepresented minorities—using only race-neutral methods.” University of California, June 15, 2020 statement
Wealth Gap – “A close examination of wealth in the U.S. finds evidence of staggering racial disparities. At $171,000, the net worth of a typical white family is nearly ten times greater than that of a Black family ($17,150) in 2016. Brookings “Examining the Black-White Wealth Gap”
On November 3, PTA urges support for this important initiative to promote long needed equal opportunity policies in state hiring, contracting, and education.