The moment has come for our nation to deal with systemic racism. To deal with the growing economic inequality in our nation. And to deal with the denial of the promise of this nation — to so many.

As part of his commitment to uplifting Black and Brown communities, Biden will also work to build an economy where every American enjoys a fair return for their work, and an equal chance to get ahead. An economy more vibrant and more powerful precisely because everybody will be included in the deal. An economy where Black, Latino, Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI), and Native American workers and families are finally welcomed as full participants.

Today, multiple overlapping crises reinforce how far we have to go to deliver on that vision. The pandemic has shone a bright light on racial disparities in health and health care — as Black and Brown Americans have suffered and died from the coronavirus at rates far higher than white Americans. The economic crisis has hit Black and Brown communities especially hard, with Black, Latino, and Native American unemployment at higher levels, and businesses owned by Black, Latino, and Asian American people closing down at alarming rates. We are also seeing a national reckoning on racial justice and the tragic human costs of systemic racism in the murders of Black men, women, and children.

President-elect Biden believes we cannot build back better without a major mobilization of effort and resources to address these challenges and to advance racial equity across the American economy. That is why racial equity is a distinct pillar of the Build Back Better plan. President-elect Biden is removing barriers to participation in our economy, expanding access to opportunity, and fully enforcing the policies and laws that we already have on the books — and the pledges Biden and Harris made as the Democratic ticket.

Specifically, the Biden-Harris administration will:

  • Spur public-private investment through a new small business opportunity plan.
  • Reform opportunity zones to fulfill their promise.
  • Make a historic commitment to equalizing federal procurement.
  • Ensure the Biden-Harris housing plan makes bold investments in homeownership and access to affordable housing for Black, Brown and Native Families.
  • Achieve equity in management, training, and higher education opportunities connected to the jobs of the future.
  • Boost retirement security and financial wealth for Black, Brown, and Native Families.
  • Ensure workers of color are compensated fairly and treated with dignity.
  • Ensure equity in Biden’s bold infrastructure and clean energy investments.
  • Support second chances for economic success.
  • Strengthen the Federal Reserve’s focus on racial economic gaps.
  • Promote diversity and accountability in leadership across key positions in all federal agencies.
  • Build a 21st century care infrastructure.
  • Address longstanding inequities in agriculture.

“Economic and racial inequities have shaped us for generations. But I give you my word: [As] President, I will marshal the ingenuity and good will of this nation to turn division into unity and bring us together.”

Joe Biden, October 6, 2020

The battle for the soul of this nation has been a constant push-and-pull for more than 240 years. A tug of war between the American ideal that we are all created equal and the harsh reality that racism has long torn us apart.

President-elect Joe Biden is working to strengthen America’s commitment to justice, and reform our criminal justice system. As the former District Attorney of San Francisco and Attorney General of California, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris has spent her entire career fighting for justice for the people, and equal justice under law.

The Biden-Harris administration will work with Congress to pass police reform legislation including:

  • A nationwide ban on chokeholds.
  • Stopping the transfer of weapons of war to police forces.
  • Improving oversight and accountability, to create a model use of force standard.
  • Creating a national police oversight commission.

We can and must reduce the number of people incarcerated in this country while also reducing crime. Our criminal justice system cannot be just unless we root out the racial, gender, and income-based disparities in the system. The system must be focused on redemption and rehabilitation. The Biden-Harris administration will take bold action to reduce our prison population, create a more just society, and make our communities safer, by:

  • Preventing crime and providing opportunities for all.
  • Eliminating racial disparities and ensuring fair sentences.
  • Offering second chances.
  • Reducing violence in our communities and supporting survivors of violence.

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Joe Biden and Kamala Harris standing on stage with arms raised.
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