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APA-IL takes action to address inequities in planning

Updated: Mar 1

In June of 2021 the Illinois Chapter of the American Planning Association sent out a statement in regards to the inequities in our society and how Planners have a responsibility to work towards correcting them.

Typically, Planners want to do this work, but it is important to remember that we also have a responsibility to promote equity and justice in the communities where we live and work.  APA-IL understands this and in May 2010 APA-IL created a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee and we strive to include these values in all we do. The Chapter is committed to continuing to provide resources, surveys, discussions, and more aimed to educate our members about anti-racism and equitable planning practices. 

Planners' Equity Resources

APA-IL also understands that real progress is made after a statement is made or a Plan is adopted. Statements and Plans are good and necessary but meaningful action must be made in our work and our daily lives in order to make progress. In order to do that, we want to support our members by providing the following resources:

  • DEI Training Needs Survey - In January 2020, the Illinois and Wisconsin Chapters of APA surveyed members and non-members to discover and define needs for an upcoming DEI virtual workshop. Anyone involved in the urban planning process was welcome to take the survey which included professional planners, students, elected and appointed individuals, and citizen planners. Survey results were published in April 2020 and identified the top 5 training needs and the level of discrimination respondents experience and witness.

  • Anti-racism/Equity Resources for Planners – Recently APA-IL created a living document that provides resources, educational information, and links to organizations working on making more equitable communities. We will be highlighting one item in the toolbox each month in our monthly communications.

  • Review of awards, board positions, and policies - APA-IL wants to ensure that APA-IL is eliminating, whenever possible, any barriers to information and resources to all of our members.

  • Providing connections – APA-IL has been connecting to Planners and folks doing Planning work all over the state through the informal virtual “Coffee Talks” and “Lockdown Lowdowns” but have recently reviewed how these spaces can specifically create spaces for members of color.

  • Speaker Directory – APA-IL is creating a speaker directory to encourage diversity in our events and allied organization events.

  • “Upholding Equity in Planning” Virtual Workshop - The Illinois and Wisconsin Chapters of APA, with the help of a 2019 APA’s Chapter Presidents Council’s grant, have come together to create a professional workshop surrounding issues of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Stay tuned for this in the fall of 2020.

We Want to Hear From You!

Please keep connecting with us on social media, and through our various events, to make sure that we are supporting you in your work and daily lives. If you would be interested in sharing what your community is experiencing right now in a blog post on the APA-IL website and newsletter or other form, please reach out to


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