Formed in 2008, the Let’s Talk Diversity Coalition was originally formed  to work toward cultural knowledge and multicultural understanding within the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs and Jefferson County. More than 550 people have attended a series of workshops focused on cultural awareness and diversity provided by the Coalition. In 2011, the Coalition, with Bestcare Treatment services as fiscal agent, received a Regional Equity Coalition grant from the Oregon Health Authority. The goal is to develop policy changes to address inequities in education, transportation, recreation, job creation and other factors that influence the health and wellness in underrepresented populations. These include, but are not limited to people of color, people with fewer financial resources, LGBTQ communities, people living with disabilities and those with mental illness or addiction difficulties.

Coalition Objectives

  • To create a Coalition of organization and community members who are committed to fostering equity and fairness within the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs and Jefferson County.
  • To collect existing data on disparities in Jefferson County and Warm Springs, and to create assessments where none are available in order to assess community equity and fairness.
  • To build capacity within the Coalition and the community through trainings, communication and relationship building to lead social justice and policy change in the region.
  • To create a regional five year plan, which will change POLICY in the region to improve equity and well-being in our community.

Five-Year Policy Goals

1. Increase cross-cultural understanding and acceptance
2. Improve healthy living and physical activity for Warm Springs and Jefferson County residents
3. Creation of more jobs in our region which pay a living wage and are attainable for our priority populations
4. Create opportunities and ability for priority populations to receive job training and career development support
5. Improve tobacco awareness and expand tobacco free community areas

With the following Third Year Focus Areas:

    • To create a monthly cross-cultural understanding newspaper column in the Madras Pioneer and the Warm Springs Spilyay.
    • Establish more Job Training and Career Building in High Schools as well as more opportunities for Job Shadowing and Internships for our priority populations.
    • Continue providing Cultural Competency trainings to the Madras High School and St. Charles Hospital staff as well as expanding the trainings to other organizations who request them.

Description of the Let’s Talk Diversity Logo:

The rain represents the renewal of life the rainbow represents our hopes, the feather with the wheat represents our different cultures in harmony under Mt. Jefferson. Our logo was designed by community member Jackie Estimo.