Social Justice and Strategic Planning at OFO
This year, Opportunities for Otsego (OFO) committed to building a strategic plan that is centered on social justice. The process with any strategic plan involves analyzing data, setting measurable goals and putting those goals into action. Setting goals to impact conditions of society is more challenging.
“We begin by looking inside our own house with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion assessments for the board of directors, management and all 140 employees. Then, based on assessment results, OFO can begin to identify and analyze potential biases within the organization and get everyone involved in ongoing opportunities to craft the definition, and delivery, of a true social justice strategic plan,” Dan Maskin said, Chief Executive Officer at OFO.
This will be done by identifying opportunities to bring diversity and inclusion into the organization.
“We will review internal policies, recruiting practices, training, succession planning, education, and community outreach. Then we will assign responsibilities across the organization and the board of directors. The process will include a timeframe for rollout, implementation, milestones to track and achieve, and celebrate,” Mr. Maskin said.
As the excellent publication, the Blue Avocado, points out, there isn’t a lot of guidance for organizations that want to create a binding, board-approved policy that incorporates values, action plans, and accountability related to social justice.
“They also point out that direct service impact depends on understanding the community, and in particular, the historical and structural inequities that led directly to the problems being addressed,” he said.
“But given all of OFO’s collective expertise in helping the poor, advocating for crime victims and building strength-based approaches with at-risk families, combined with its policy work at the state and national levels, the board of directors firmly believes that these experiences put us ahead of the game as we go on this journey to strengthen our communities, he said.