Achieving diversity on Massachusetts public boards and commissions

Massachusetts leads the nation in human talent, yet data shows a lack of representation of women and people of color on state boards and commissions. An Act to Ensure Gender Parity and Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Public Boards and Commissions (H. 3157/S. 2077) would promote diversity in leadership and governance that broadly reflects the demographics of our Commonwealth.

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Achieving diversity on Massachusetts public boards and commissions

Massachusetts leads the nation in human talent, yet data shows a lack of representation of women and people of color on state boards and commissions. An Act to Ensure Gender Parity and Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Public Boards and Commissions (H. 3157/S. 2077) would promote diversity in leadership and governance that broadly reflects the demographics of our Commonwealth.

Learn More

WHAT IS IT?

Massachusetts leads the nation in human talent, and our pipelines are replete with women and people of color ready to serve. The data shows we have a long way to go in order to reach gender parity and increased representation of people of color on our state boards and commissions.

We need more diverse representation in leadership and governance that broadly reflects the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and offers a variety of perspectives on the decisions that impact our community and our future.

WHAT IS IT?

Massachusetts leads the nation in human talent, and our pipelines are replete with women and people of color ready to serve. The data shows we have a long way to go in order to reach gender parity and increased representation of people of color on our state boards and commissions.

We need more diverse representation in leadership and governance that broadly reflects the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and offers a variety of perspectives on the decisions that impact our community and our future.

THE PROBLEM

Public boards and commissions have outsized impact on the direction of our policies and initiatives on education, health and human services, housing and economic development, labor and workforce development, public safety, and more.

Without various viewpoints and voices to inform these critical decisions, we risk putting in place less effective policies and alienating our diverse communities.

THE PROBLEM

Public boards and commissions have outsized impact on the direction of our policies and initiatives on education, health and human services, housing and economic development, labor and workforce development, public safety, and more.

Without various viewpoints and voices to inform these critical decisions, we risk putting in place less effective policies and alienating our diverse communities.

THE FACTS

THE FACTS

Icon representing a group of people

In Massachusetts, women and people of color account for 52% and 28% respectively, of the state’s population yet are significantly underrepresented in leadership positions.

Icon representing education showing a graduate with diploma

Women are underrepresented among our key education boards which is an urgent concern given the fact that women are 75% of teachers in K-12, 94% of child care workers and 57% of all higher education students.

Icon representing boardroom, a group of three at a table

On the state’s 50 most prominent public boards and commissions, women are just 22% of CEOs, 34% of board chairs and 39% of board members.

WHAT WOULD THIS LEGISLATION DO?

An Act to Ensure Gender Parity and Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Public Boards and Commissions (H. 3157/S. 2077) would require that the composition of each appointed public board and commission broadly reflect the general public of the Commonwealth. All appointive boards and commissions of the state shall be gender, racially and ethnically balanced. According to the bill, composition should not exceed 50% of one gender. Additionally, racial and ethnic composition of each board and commission must, at minimum, reflect the percentage of racial and ethnic minorities in the general population. There must be a focused effort to appoint women of color to boards and commissions.

As our state and community continues to grow economically and culturally, enacting this legislation would bring about major change across our leadership diversity.

WHAT WOULD THIS LEGISLATION DO?

An Act to Ensure Gender Parity and Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Public Boards and Commissions (H. 3157/S. 2077) would require that the composition of each appointed public board and commission broadly reflect the general public of the Commonwealth. All appointive boards and commissions of the state shall be gender, racially and ethnically balanced. According to the bill, composition should not exceed 50% of one gender. Additionally, racial and ethnic composition of each board and commission must, at minimum, reflect the percentage of racial and ethnic minorities in the general population.

As our state and community continues to grow economically and culturally, enacting this legislation would bring about major change across our leadership diversity.

COALITION MEMBERS

YW Boston logo

The Parity On Board Coalition is led by YW Boston

COALITION MEMBERS

YW Boston logo

The Parity On Board Coalition is led by YW Boston

AAUW of Massachusetts logo
Amplify Latinx logo
Eos Foundation logo
Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women logo
Mass Now logo
Massachusetts Women's Political Caucus logo
WBA logo

TAKE ACTION

BECOME A COALITION MEMBER

We are building a coalition of leaders, supporters, volunteers, and partners interested in diversifying leadership and decision-making in Massachusetts. Support An Act to Ensure Gender Parity and Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Public Boards and Commissions (H. 3157/S. 2077) by becoming a Parity On Board coalition partner.

As a coalition partner, you will receive updates on the status of the bill, have the opportunity to be a part of coalition meetings, and be the first to know of future interventions in support of this bill. As a coalition partner, you are committing to publicly advocating for this bill.

SIGN UP FOR UPDATES

Stay up to date with coalition updates, bill progress, and future involvement opportunities by signing up for the Parity On Board newsletter.

    I'm interested in: Becoming a coalition partnerVolunteeringCoalition updatesEvents

    TAKE ACTION

    BECOME A COALITION MEMBER

    We are building a coalition of leaders, supporters, volunteers, and partners interested in diversifying leadership and decision-making in Massachusetts. Support An Act to Ensure Gender Parity and Racial and Ethnic Diversity on Public Boards and Commissions (HD.2082/SD. 521) by becoming a Parity On Board coalition partner.

    As a coalition partner, you will receive updates on the status of the bill, have the opportunity to be a part of coalition meetings, and be the first to know of future interventions in support of this bill. As a coalition partner, you are committing to publicly advocating for this bill.

    SIGN UP FOR UPDATES

    Stay up to date with coalition updates, bill progress, and future involvement opportunities by signing up for the Parity On Board newsletter.

      I'm interested in: Becoming a coalition partnerVolunteeringCoalition updatesEvents