Human Resources Administration311Search all websites

Office of Equity & Inclusion (OEI)

Four DSS employees smiling a posing for the camera on a multicolored background

Mission Statement


The Department of Social Services’ Office of Equity & Inclusion (“OEI”) was established in December 2020. OEI is responsible for ensuring the agency’s core values of equity, diversity, and inclusion (“EDI”) are embedded throughout all aspects of the workforce, programs, and services by cultivating an inclusive climate and culture. This is done through outreach, engaging in cross divisional collaborations, programming, and learning & development opportunities.

The Office of Equity & Inclusion is comprised of three areas:

Racial Equity Initiatives

This area works to ensure the agency’s commitment to providing dignified service delivery and fostering an inclusive work environment for all clients and employees, regardless of their race and ethnicity, is met by advancing racial equity within it. This area strives to complete its goals by working collaboratively with DSS-HRA-DHS leadership to establish and endorse the racial equity agenda and measure the agency’s success in achieving its goals and objectives.

Local Law 174 requires DSS-HRA-DHS to complete "equity assessments" to identify policies and practices that may be implemented to address disparate outcomes on the basis of gender, race, income and sexual orientation, and to create an "equity action plan" to address disparate outcomes identified by the agency. The Office of Equity & Inclusion equity action plan focuses exclusively on addressing disparities and identifying other inequities.

Gender Equity Initiatives

This area works collaboratively with DSS-HRA-DHS leadership to establish and endorse the gender equity agenda and measure the agency’s success in achieving its goals and objectives. This area works to meet its objective of ensuring all agency services and programming are affirming for people regardless of their gender identity or expression. In addition, this area ensures that the agency service delivery, reflects gender-informed practices, giving staff the tools and support needed to work with people of all gender identities and expressions.

Learn more about Transgender, Non-binary, and Intersex Policy

Employee Programs

This area provides oversight and guidance to the agency’s Employee Resource and Heritage groups, as well as plans and coordinates agency events and initiatives such as:

  • Blood Drives
  • Excellence Program
  • Commissioner Assignments
  • ERG/Heritage Events
  • Special Meetings and Retreats
  • Trainings
  • Lunch & Learns
  • Toy Drives
  • Workwell Health and Wellness Activities

The GRIEA Project Podcast

The GRIEA Project—hosted by Shaquiea Sykes and Gregory Williams—is a podcast series that centers on celebrating diversity by capturing raw discussions about key diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) topics. This 2024 Anthem Award-winning series spotlights cutting-edge DEI practices and broadens listeners' perspectives on current DEI issues to create equitable workspaces.

New York City Equity Initiatives