Orange County will host a public hearing on Wednesday for community members to share their thoughts on the district's new racial equity plan that will soon be implemented.
The meeting will take place at 7:15 p.m. on Zoom. The equity plan aims to dismantle racial disparities in the community by uncovering and addressing implicit biases in principal institutions.
The initiative uses a division of subcommittees to achieve their goals, such as ones for training, accountability and community engagement. Each committee serves a different purpose — from racial equity training of government workers and business partners to data acquisition on local disparities.
Training and educational topics include the history of race, implicit and explicit bias, institutional and structural racism and how to use and apply racial equity tools.
UNC first-year Ben Neill said he was happy to see a shift in the narrative surrounding power structures, and hopes it will open people's eyes to injustice.
"If you can't acknowledge a problem, you can't solve it," Neill said. "Once we get past that, we can talk about real solutions."
What stands out the most to Chapel Hill Town Council member Hongbin Gu is the new process that government officials will undergo in meetings and the effort for community outreach.
Gu said that although she thinks these processes are good, she desires tangible change, as results and quantifiable impact are long overdue. She added that healthcare, education, housing and entrepreneurship have been recognizable issues that officials of the Carrboro, Chapel Hill and Hillsborough communities have been aware of for over 30 years.
"I think the change has come too slow, but the pandemic has forced newfound urgency over this issue," Gu said.