Portland Housing Bureau partnered with the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability to develop a series of maps that reflect opportunity within Portland. The maps are part of a project called the Portland Housing Growth and Opportunity Analysis. They were designed based on indicators identified by the Coalition for a Livable Future and preliminary feedback from our Technical Advisory Committee.
We recognize that Portland’s communities of color are disproportionately impacted by issues of poverty and access to opportunity. The project helped illustrate a new thinking about public participation in planning projects. In the last six months, the Technical Advisory Committee has brought people from different communities and professional backgrounds to the table. We also engaged the Diversity and Civic Leadership (DCL) program, through the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, to facilitate focus groups among communities of color and immigrant communities.
“I really appreciate having the DCL. If we didn’t have an organized partnership, I suspect that our voices would still be overlooked,” said Donita Fry. Donita is a DCL member as the Portland Youth and Elders Council Coordinator for the Native American Youth and Family Center, known as NAYA. “We are the experts because we are the community. Who knows better what our priorities are than our families and community members?”
The DCL program consists of members from The Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO), NAYA’s Portland Youth & Elders Council, The Urban League of Portland, Latino Network and Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization.
"Latino Network uses a cultural lens when presenting the Opportunity Maps to our community. The information sharing and gathering has increased interest and trust for the City's housing work, which is critical in a time of changing demographics for Portland,” said Nancy Ramirez Arriaga, a DCL member and Program Director for Latino Network’s Leadership and Civic Engagement program. “We are confident that when integrated, the voice and contributions of Latinos and other ethnic communities can lead to more sustainable and equitable living conditions for all Portland residents."