Equity Indicator Report

When the Board of Supervisors declared racism a public health crisis in 2021, it directed OERJ to launch an Equity Indicator Report to give a baseline synopsis of the impact of systemic racial inequities throughout our County.  We worked with community members to identify 34 equity indicators across 10 themes to illustrate where and how they experience disparities in access, opportunity, and outcomes. 


This annual assessment will help analyze our progress towards departmental and County-wide equity goals, develop targeted strategies, and maintain accountability with impacted communities.  


Executive Summary Translations:


The ten themes below represent a broad array of community experiences and outcomes. Expand each theme to read more about how they fit into our County’s vision for equity. For more detailed information, data, and visuals, read the full report or visit our data portal!

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  • Communities & Civic Life

    Small businesses, neighborhood diversity, and political participation benefit communities by fostering belonging, investment, and a shared social fabric. However, if these benefits are unevenly accessible to people because of their race, gender, disability, or place of birth, it can exacerbate inequity.


    • Business Ownership
    • Racial Diversity of Neighborhoods
    • Voter Registration


  • Early Childhood Development

    “Early childhood,” the first 8 years of a child’s life, is considered a critical period for a variety of health and developmental outcomes. Stability, family support, and safety from trauma foster healthy human development and long-term flourishing. Interventions in early childhood, especially among children who need the most help, can generate long-lasting cognitive, behavioral, academic, and health benefits.


    • Youth Homelessness
    • Adverse Childhood Experiences
    • Youth Poverty


  • Education

    Education can prepare children for rewarding careers, long-term financial security, good citizenship, and a life of learning. While it is commonly referred to as the great equalizer in terms of social mobility, inequity in public education threatens this promise. Ensuring equity is important, as education and related outcomes influence a host of other social spheres.


    • 3-4 year-old School Enrollment
    • Standardized Assessment Performance
    • English Language Learners
    • Suspensions 
    • High School Graduation


  • Food Systems

    Access to consistent, affordable nutrition is essential for health and well-being. Low-income and rural communities in the United States may have limited access because of their distance to affordable food outlets and other factors. In addition, higher food costs may leave people and households unable to afford consistent meals.


    • Food Security
    • Grocery Access


  • Health

    Measuring equity in health is important but difficult because of the number of factors influencing health (like health behaviors and environmental hazards) and the variety of possible outcomes (like asthma, diabetes, cancer, and so on). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), health equity is achieved when every person has the opportunity to “attain his or her full health potential” and no one is “disadvantaged from achieving this potential because of social position or other socially determined circumstances.”


    • Low Birthweight
    • Health Insurance
    • Health Professional Shortage Areas
    • Life Expectancy


  • Housing

    Shelter is an essential human need, and housing offers critically important stability, especially for families with children. Many people living in the United States see homeownership as part of “the American Dream” and as a source of long-term financial security and well-being. However, housing of any type in San Diego County can be difficult to acquire due to factors like cost. Even when someone secures a form of housing, other circumstances can quickly threaten their ability to afford or maintain it.   


    • Homelessness
    • Cost-Burdened Households
    • Homeownership


  • Infrastructure

    Infrastructure is what helps connect people and places, providing the structure and systems to organize the essential functions of our society. It covers things like utilities, roads, and telecommunications. Good infrastructure helps ensure that communities can thrive and don’t face barriers to accessing basic services.


    • Internet Access
    • Commute Time and Means of Transportation


  • Jobs & Finances

    Consistent, sufficient income is central to families’ financial stability, economic mobility, and health outcomes. Differences in income among demographic groups can stem from discrimination in education, recruiting, hiring, wage setting, and in promotions and performance evaluations.


    • Employment
    • Poverty
    • Self-Sufficiency Wage
    • Households with Debt in Collections


  • Parks & Natural Resources

    A healthy natural environment and access to green spaces is important for physical and mental health. Historic policies limited where communities of color could live, and these areas often had limited green space and contained environmental hazards.


    • Air Quality Index
    • Parks & Community Spaces
    • Beach Water Quality


  • Crime & the Legal System

    Involvement in the crime and legal system and the associated outcomes often impact people of different racial/ethnic backgrounds, gender, socio-economic status, and other marginalized and intersectional identities inequitably. These experiences have long-lasting and compounding repercussions on criminalized people and communities that range from health outcomes to the ability to work, travel, or vote.


    • Crime Rate
    • Hate Crimes
    • Police Stops and Searches
    • Juvenile Arrests
    • Incarceration Rate