The Commission on Black Girls (Commission or COBG) was created by former Councilmember Priscilla Tyson in July of 2018 to enhance the quality of life of Black girls. Further, the 25-member Commission was initially created to participate in fact-finding and research to learn more about the quality of life of Black girls in Columbus and Central Ohio.
After several months of research, In July of 2020 the Commission released A Report on the Quality of Life of Black Girls in Columbus, Ohio (The Report). The Report contains insights based on what was learned, along with strategies and recommendations to guide the continuous work to support Black girls. The Report is also the framework that the Commission uses to prioritize its work and provide context for the issues that need to be addressed to improve life for Black girls in our community.
In June 2022, the Commission officially moved to the Department of Neighborhoods to accelerate efforts to enrich the lives of Black girls in Columbus. This transition allows the Commission to work in alignment with My Brother’s Keeper, the Community Relations Commission and other Department of Neighborhood’s programming
WHY THE COMMISSION IS NEEDED
Long-standing systemic inequities continue to present significant challenges in the lives of Black women vs. their non-Black peers, even from their childhoods. Racial disparities persist in nearly all socioeconomic indicators, including income, wealth, education, and health.
Policy and community action meant to improve the quality of life of Black women are important to the continued development of Columbus. If policymakers and community leaders intend on shifting the experience of Black families, it is critical that they start with the experience of Black women. The prevalence of female headed households within the Black community makes this especially true. About 60% of Black children in Columbus live in single mother households. Intervening in the experiences of Black women while they are still girls may be the most effective way of improving their future outcomes.
The Commission on Black Girls is dedicated to enriching the lives of Black girls and ensuring that they have opportunities to thrive without the disruption of systemic barriers that have traditionally impacted Black girls. The Commission strives to provide resources, and advocacy for programs and policies cultivating an environment where Black girls can realize their full potential.