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AFRICAN AMERICAN ENVIRONMENTALIST ASSOCIATION

Environmental Law Institute

 

Diversity Survey Response

 

Does your organization have grants or contracts with the Federal government?

 

Yes_____X_ No_______ List Agencies_US  EPA, US AID, USDA, Department of Interior, Department of Energy_

 

If yes, indicate range: Less than $100,000___16___Greater than $100,000__6 ______

 

1.     Number of professional minority employees (number of nonminority employees).

                        10  -  (39)

2.     Number of administrative minority employees (number of nonminority admin employees).

                     2  -  (1)

3.     Percent of minority employees over the past 3 years (average) compared to nonminority employees.

                      21%  

4.     Do you have a formal Diversity Program?

        Yes. (Program initiated in 2003 by commissioning study by Robert Stanton. Board and staff implementation process continues during 2004 with target of Board adoption of full Diversity Action Plan in June 2004.)

 

                    Coordinators - Program implementation work group consists of Vivian Buckingham (Research); Erik Meyers (Associates/ Legal);                                  Loretta Reinersmann (Finance); and Laura Van Wyk (Administration).

                     Estimated 2004 DAP range is $60,000 to $100,000.

 5.     Number of minority program managers and project directors (number of nonminority program managers and project directors).

                       6  (14)  (during 2003)

 6.     Number of formal (programmatic, monetary, managerial) partnerships with minority organizations.

                        4 (during 2003)

 7.     Number of minority contractors used for goods and services (at least 3 with at least 15% of supplier/services budget).

                         4 (during 2003)  - total amount relative to services/supplies budget = 15% [amount excludes travel expenditures since Survey seeks responses to domestic (US) diversity and related program and most travel expenditure was international.]

      8.     Use services of minority bank (at least one).

                        0

 9.     Total amount of contributions to minority environmental organizations (threshold: 15% budget)

                         $118,000 /   6.38% of budget. [amount and percent excludes contributions to overseas NGOs and environmental legal clinics and programs at universities

                    in Africa, India and Latin American and work with indigenous tribes in Latin America]

 10. Percent of budget dedicated to minority staff and minority programs.

                         Approximately 24%

Bonus: Describe the positive or negative effects of diversity at your organization. Describe your plans to improve diversity at your organization in 2004.

        The Environmental Law Institute's diverse staff is a key asset in advancing environmental protection in the United States and abroad. Such a staff is especially helpful in  building strong relationships with ELI's many partners in Africa, India and Latin America.  Equally valuable is the diversity represented on ELI's Board of Directors and in its Advisory Council and other voluntary, advisory committees.  Having wide and deep representation from all the communities that ELI seeks to serve helps the organization be more effective in pursuing its mission to improve environmental law, management and policy. ELI created a Diversity Action Implementation Work Group during 2003 to propose detailed responses to recommendations contained in a commissioned  report on opportunities and actions for improving cultural diversity in the organization and programs of the Environmental Law Institute conducted by Robert G. Stanton, Consultant in Conservation Policy,  Planning and Management. A formal Diversity Action Plan will be prepared by the Work Group and ELI Board Executive Committee and will be presented for Board adoption in June 2004. One special focus will be on ELI's internship programs and another on formalizing its staff and Board recruitment efforts to insure active outreach to culturally diverse bar (legal) and student associations.

 

Report Card Explanation

 

Each item has a value of 10 points or 10 percentage points.  The ratings include: 100%-80%-Excellent, 70%-50%-Good, Below 50%-Poor  

The Environmental Movement should reflect the demographics of America.  As such, we are using a specific percentage as the basis for evaluating environmental groups.  We believe that a 15% participation rate is a fair measure for applying the criteria listed above.  It also provides a tangible target for groups to measure themselves.  This percentage rate will be applied to appropriate criteria. 

1. Number of professional minority employees (number of nonminority employees). Although many environmental groups have minority employees, they are usually administrative staff, especially the receptionist position.  Professional employees include research assistants, research associates, researchers, lobbyists, and management/accounting-level (CEO, VP, COO, CFO, CPA, Development Director).  We believe that a 15% minority participation rate is reasonable for full ten-point credit.  Ten percent or more—six points.  Five percent or more—three points.

However, we realize that this level of participation will be problematic for traditional environmental organizations because the work environments can be hostile, exclusive, and policy positions can be contrary to personal, racial and cultural beliefs.  Thus, the history of minorities in these positions is poor.  When minorities are hired, the retention rate is poor.   Minority participation will remain poor as long as working environments at environmental groups are hostile and as long as they are unwilling to entertain and adopt minority-friendly policies.

2. Number of administrative minority employees (number of nonminority admin employees).  Groups should score here because it must be comfortable for both parties to interact at this level.  Secretaries, receptionists and typists are important positions for effective and efficient operation of any organization, however, more aggressive efforts should be made to recruit and retain professionals.  This should not be difficult in urban and suburban areas where most environmental groups are located because there is abundant minority talent in these areas.  A 15% participation rate qualifies the group for credit in this category.  Ten percent or more, 6 points. Five percent or more, 3 points. 

3. Percent of minority employees over the past 3 years (average) compared to nonminority employees.  This is a combination of administrative and professional employees over time.  A group, for whatever reason, might have a year where minority employment slips.  However, if there is a low percentage over time, then a clear pattern and practice of discrimination is implied. It also implies that minorities are not aware of positions at these organizations as a result of separate living patterns, cultural disconnects and intent to avoid employing diverse populations.  A 15% combined participation rate qualifies the group for full credit in this category.  Ten percent or more, 6 points. Five percent or more, 3 points.

4. Do you have a formal Diversity Program?    This question requires a simple yes or no response.  If yes, specify program director and range of estimated program budget (e.g., $100,000-$200,000, etc). 

5. Number of minority program managers, project managers, program directors and project directors (number of nonminority program managers and project directors).  These positions are crucial to the implementation of the policies of the organizations.  At least two (2) positions are needed to qualify for full credit in this category.   Five points for one position.

6. Number of formal (programmatic, monetary, managerial) partnerships with minority organizations.  This category includes programmatic partnerships that deal with substantive issues.  This category can include jointly funded and executed programs or programs that are subcontracted to, and executed by, minority organizations.  At least three (3) formal partnerships are needed to qualify for full credit in this category.  Six points for two formal partnerships. Three points for one formal partnership.   

7. Number of minority contractors used for goods and services (at least 3 with at least 15% of supplier/services budget for total credit).  Three points for 1 contractor. Six points for 2 contractors.

8. Use services of minority bank (at least one).

9. Total amount of contributions to minority environmental organizations (threshold: 15% budget).  A group can take credit for this category if 15% of its budget goes to minority organizations.    Six points for 10%. Four points for 5% or more.

10. Percent of budget dedicated to minority staff and minority programs.  A group can take total credit for this category if 15% of its budget is dedicated to minority staff salaries and minority programs.  The credit is 6 points if 10% or more of its budget is dedicated to minority staff salaries and minority programs.  The credit is 4 points if 5% or more of its budget is dedicated to minority staff salaries and minority programs.

Bonus: How has your organization changed due to having a diverse or more diverse staff? In what new areas are you now doing or considering doing business or investing? What new, better or different ways are you communicating to or with the public? In what new geographic areas are you now working or considering? What new or different short term and long term strategies do you now have that you might not have had otherwise? In other words, has it made a substantial or significant difference to your organizational activities and goals to have diversity in significant staff and management levels? Up to 10 points at the discretion of AAEA.

 

Copyright 2003. African American Environmentalist Association. All Rights Reserved. 

 

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