Looking forward federally

President Joe Biden signs executive orders for racial equity

On Jan. 20 Joe Biden was inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States. Since taking office he’s signed dozens of executive orders, including some dealing with racial equity.  

“Equal opportunity is the fundamental promise of America. But systemic racism and discrimination in our economy, laws and institutions have put the promise of America out of reach for too many families of color,” the White House website said before listing four of the orders Biden signed.

1. The first of these orders is for the Department of Housing and Urban Development to advance fair housing. In the order Biden explained that the goal of this order is to stop discrimination for any reason regarding housing and “to take steps necessary to redress racially discriminatory federal housing policies.”  

2. Another order is for the Department of Justice to end its use of private prisons. This is a step towards police reform after the killing of George Floyd in May of 2020 and the subsequent protests to end police brutality and systemic racism.  

 “To decrease incarceration levels, we must reduce profit-based incentives to incarcerate by phasing out the federal government’s reliance on privately operated criminal detention facilities,” Biden wrote.   

3. The third order is to reaffirm the federal government’s “commitment to tribal sovereignty and consultation.” In this order, Biden plans for the Federal Government to communicate with tribal leaders in communities such as American Indian and Alaskan Native Tribes. The goal of this order is “empowering self-determination, and advancing racial justice for Native communities,” wrote Biden.  

 4. The fourth order is to “combat Xenophobia Against Asian American and Pacific Islanders.” The intent of this order is to combat anti-Asian discrimination, bullying and harassment that has increased in this past year due to the pandemic. 

It also directs the Department of Justice to partner with AAPI communities to prevent  hate crimes and harassment against AAPIs,” the White House website said.