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City receives second place cultural diversity award

(Mar 13, 2017)

On March 13, the National League of Cities (NLC) recognized Westminster’s inclusivity efforts with a 2017 Cultural Diversity Award. The award, presented at NLC’s annual conference in Washington, D.C., recognized the city’s efforts to create the new Inclusivity Board in 2016. Westminster took home second place in our population category of 51,000 to 200,000.

“What an honor that all the hard work of our residents is being noticed nationally,” said Inclusivity Board liaison and City Councillor Maria De Cambra. “These efforts are more important now than ever, and council will continue to advocate to ensure that everyone in our city feels welcome.” Councillor De Cambra was present at the NLC conference and accepted the award on behalf of the city. 

In January 2015, Westminster City Council formed the Inclusivity Task Force to help guide the city as it examined a potential permanent board or commission that would consider issues of inclusivity and diversity in our community. In October, the task force provided recommendations to City Council on the formation of an Inclusivity Board.  Then on Nov. 9, 2015, City Council unanimously voted to approve the formation of the Westminster Inclusivity Board.

The Westminster Inclusivity Board is a resident-led board of 15 members that serve as a bridge between the city and the community, with a mission to advocate for all voices within our community and to ensure everyone is treated with fairness, dignity and respect. The Inclusivity Board has been a resident-driven effort from its inception and works to evaluate needs and fill gaps in our community through inclusive policies and practices, demonstrating the city’s ongoing commitment to cultural diversity and community-driven leadership. 

Through a community forum and citywide survey, the Inclusivity Board has already made great strides toward making the city even more accessible to all cultural groups and community members, specifically those from our underserved communities. These efforts will continue to grow in years to come as the board works to implement their newly developed strategic plan.

Establishing a permanent board of residents working to promote inclusivity and to advise our City Council is something the city feels has been crucial in order to authentically engage our community and promote cultural diversity and inclusivity citywide.