Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity

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East bluff community center brick buildingCommunity Forum

Tuesday, February 6
East Bluff Community Center
5:30-7 p.m.

We want to hear from you! The Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity is holding its second community forum at the East Bluff Community Center on Tuesday, February 6 from 5:30-7 p.m. This is an opportunity to discuss with commission members your concerns and what you have experienced in your community. Please make plans to attend. Questions? Email


Our community, like all communities in our country, struggles with the legacy of slavery and prejudice. That legacy is harmful not just to people of color, but to all our community members and jeopardizes the future successes of our community. We are committed to changing the impact of that legacy.

On July 15, 2021, the City of Peoria and the County of Peoria launched the Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity (RJE). Rather than hire outside consultants, our governing bodies decided to assemble a racially diverse group of over 160 Peoria City and County residents to investigate and propose action plans on issues related to racial justice and equity.


To end racism in City and County government and to achieve racial equity and justice across our community.


Accelerate efforts to institutionalize racial justice and equity within County and City government and to advance its adoption throughout the region.

Questions? Email the commission at

Work to Date

Computer with Community Engagement Forum presentation title page and Thank You! textNovember 2023 Community Forum

We hosted a Community Forum on  November 28, 2023, at Neighborhood House in Peoria. We saw about 50 residents attend! We listened and heard your concerns and issues most important to you. The voices of community organizations were clear:  We need more collaboration in our communities.

2023 Annual Meeting

Members of the Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity met on November 15, 2023 to discuss charter amendments and receive committee reports. 

View the presentation slides here (PDF).
View the meeting on YouTube.

2022 Annual Meeting

Commission members released a comprehensive annual report on the state of racial justice and equity in the community. View the Annual ReportRed cover with State of IL on it Opens in new window

Presentations to Peoria City Council and Peoria County Board

Current News

November 2023

  • Racial Justice Commission town hall packs Peoria Neighborhood House (WCBU)
  • Community members share their stories as Peoria tries to fix racial disparity (WMBD TV)

April 2023

  • Peoria City/County Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity co-chairs explain next steps to addressing disparities (WCBU)
  • The Co-Chairs of the Peoria City/County Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity share some insights from their 30-page report (WCBU)
  • Peoria report evaluates effects of systemic racism on residents (The 21st)
  • Almost ten times more Black juveniles arrested than White ones, PPD data shows  (25 News)
  • Q&A: Mayor Ali addresses affordable housing, racial disparity, talent attraction (WCBU)

March 2023

  • New report reveals grim quality of life for Blacks in Peoria County (25 News)
  • 'The gap is large': Joint Commission on Racial Justice and Equity issues report on disparities in Peoria County (WCBU)
  • Peoria City/County Racial Justice and Equity Commission releases report (WMBD Radio)
  • First report from Peoria Racial Justice Commission finds disparities (WMBD TV)
  • City Council hears 'sobering' report on racial disparity in Peoria (Journal Star)
  • Calls for action as panel releases data showing deep racial disparity in Peoria (WMBD Radio)
  • Peoria Council working to make city attractive and equitable (WMBD TV)
  • Calls for action as panel releases data showing deep racial disparity in Peoria (25 News Now)
City of Peoria Mayor Rita Ali

How to Support Our Work

There are many ways to assist with our work.  First, individuals are encouraged to join the commission. There are multiple working groups to serve on, each focusing on a different part of racial justice and equality in our community. Apply Here 

Second, simply becoming knowledgeable about our efforts and supporting our work before your elected representatives is helpful. Our website and social media will help keep you advised. Finally, promote racial equity in your job site, in local schools, and in the organizations you support.

Questions? Email the commission at