Commitment to Equity & Inclusion

The City of Fredericksburg is committed to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion and engaging in important conversations in our community to ensure three goals:

  1. Our past is told in an inclusive and equitable manner, reflective of all voices.
  2. We continuously monitor and improve our present-day activities to ensure we create a safe and diverse community.   
  3. We encourage residents to voice their opinions and desires as well as become actively involved in the city's legislative process to plan for our future.

We strive to become a more equitable, inclusive, and diverse place to work, live and visit. The City of Fredericksburg is grateful to all who have contributed and continue to work on the many important steps ahead. 


Remembering Our History 

As a community, we understand that history has been told through the view of only a few and we carry the responsibility of sharing the full story, one that is representative of all voices in our history. 

These are the ways we are acting on our commitment to remembering our history:

Relocating & Recognizing the Slave Auction Block 

The 1,200-pound Slave Auction Block, which once sat at the corner of Charles and William Streets, was removed on June 5, 2020, with its original location recognized in an October 2020 ceremony that set forth the first step in the City’s plan to begin on a purposeful journey to tell more of our story. Read more about our city’s efforts to respectfully ensure appropriate relocation and management of its historical relevance. 

Installing historical markers to better tell our full history

The City has recently created and installed three new historical panels that better tell our story. These panels focus on contributions made to our community by Black people throughout the centuries. A video on this effort can be found here -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DuCI6kA1eeM. Additional efforts are planned.

Creating a Chief Equity Officer position

Included in the City Manager’s recommended budget for Fiscal Year 2022 is the creation of a new Chief Equity Officer position. This individual will be tasked with ensuring and carrying out the City’s commitment to racial equity.

Renaming of Jefferson Davis Highway

On July 14, 2020 City Council passed a Resolution 20-57 in which they urged Virginia General Assembly to remove the name Jefferson Davis Highway from U.S. Route 1 statewide and replace it with a name that promotes our shared values of unity, equality, and a commitment to a better future for all Americans. HB 2075, renaming certain sections of Jefferson Davis Highway, was signed into law on March 30, with an effective date of January 1, 2022. Read more about the upcoming change.

 

Evaluating & Implementing Responsible Policing 

 As our nation is faced with important and dynamic change, those who serve and protect us understand it is necessary to continuously evaluate responsible approaches and appropriate responses to maintaining the safety of the public while also respecting our residents’ freedom of speech.

These are the ways we are acting on our commitment to responsible policing:

Enlisting the Police Executive Research Forum, also known as PERF

The City enlisted PERF to conduct an independent review of the actions and use of force during demonstrations that occurred last May and June during a time of dynamic and extraordinary circumstances in our community and our nation. Read more about it.

Expanding Citizen Advisory Panel & Adopting Policing Policy Changes

In advance of the PERF Report, the Fredericksburg Police Department adopted policy changes, expanded the Citizen Advisory Panel, and held departmental information events for the public. The department’s Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) reaccreditation one-year review was also completed in December 2020, reflecting 100% compliance with its 114 standards.


Pursuing Equity for All

The City of Fredericksburg understands we are living in very dynamic times and our purpose is to serve and protect our citizens, while continuously advancing how we do so in the most responsible and responsive manner possible.  

These are the ways we are acting on our commitment to pursuing racial equity:

Implementing a Notification System

Get notifications about City government surveys and request for public input on matters of racial equity. Sign up here. 

Inviting Public Comment

Have a comment to submit about the City’s Racial Equity Initiatives? Please submit it here

Recognizing the LGBTQIA+ Community

During Pride month in June, and all year ‘round, the City welcomes those from all walks of life and celebrates the contributions to the City from LGBTQIA+ persons. Join us in our support of the Pride March on June 26, 2021. Find more information on VisitFred.com.

Publishing Racial Equity Plan

Learn more about the City Council’s activities and timeline here. 

Joining National Network and Planning Council Offsite Meeting

The City has applied to become a member of the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), a national network of government working to achieve racial equity and advance opportunities for all. Looking ahead, the City Council’s bi-annual offsite for priority planning was held in May 2021 and will be seeking public engagement on these efforts this summer. 

Inviting Feedback on Racial Equity Plan

On-behalf of the City of Fredericksburg, the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (ICSC) facilitated a racial equity survey and public input process. Read the details