Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Speeches Shim

USAID is committed to a diverse, equitable, inclusive workplace where everyone has an opportunity to thrive.

“Each of us has a responsibility to address bigotry, gender discrimination, and structural racism and uphold individual dignity... This isn’t just one of our values; it’s our mission—one hand extended out to another to meet people where they are and treat others as equals.” -- USAID Administrator Samantha Power

USAID is committed to a diverse, equitable, inclusive workplace where everyone has an opportunity to thrive.

The Agency’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Strategy commits USAID to improving and enhancing diversity throughout the Agency, enhancing inclusion and equity for everyone in the workplace, and strengthening accountability for promoting and sustaining a diverse workforce and an inclusive Agency culture.

In order to achieve the first of these goals: enhancing diversity throughout the Agency, Agency leadership will proactively address internal systems that potentially inhibit inclusive diversity efforts and access throughout the USAID employee life cycle; will develop, implement, and enhance a range of policies, programs, practices, and systems to improve and increase diversity; and will develop and implement broad outreach strategies to attract talent from diverse sources.

In order to achieve the second of these goals: enhancing inclusion and equity for everyone in the workplace, Agency leaders will champion and enable staff participation in initiatives that work toward the betterment of the Agency’s efforts in DEI and actively engage with these groups to operationalize their recommendations and efforts. Agency leadership will establish and enhance training and capacity-building opportunities for all staff, including managers and supervisors, on diversity fundamentals, bias, and principles of inclusion -- all of which contribute to a respectful, safe, and inclusive work environment that enhances retention.

The third goal of the strategy is to achieve strengthened accountability for promoting and sustaining a diverse workforce and an inclusive Agency culture. To achieve this goal, the Agency will consistently apply DEI principles across program and management operations; all leaders at the Agency will be required to show evidence of their support for DEI at USAID; performance management efforts at the Agency will promote accountability to create and sustain a diverse and inclusive workplace at all staff levels; and, finally, Agency efforts to promote DEI will be informed by workforce data and principles of transparency.

These goals, and the actions the Agency is committed to taking to ensure progress and change on DEI, have been established in this strategy following a rigorous process that included data collection, analysis, stakeholder interviews, focus groups, listening sessions, and consultations at all levels throughout the Agency. A range of stakeholders were involved in developing this strategy. The establishment of this strategy does not end this process, but, rather, ensures that the process will continue, that concrete actions will be taken, and that there will be accountability for the achievement of the goals.

As Administrator Power remarked, “Too often, the burden of making a workplace more equitable, more respectful, more welcoming and inclusive, falls on under-represented and under-resourced and under-supported diverse staff.” This strategy ensures that everyone in the Agency shares the responsibility and opportunity for embracing our commitment to creating a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace in USAID.

Last updated: October 20, 2021

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