Around the country, people are trying to break down the barriers that prevent people of color, women, and the non-wealthy from having a powerful voice in our government. Last year, Seattle passed a first-of-its-kind initiative to ensure city government is of, by, and for the people; and cities in California, Florida, New Jersey, and Virginia passed anti-corruption measures. Portland could also be a leader in taking back democracy. 

North Star Civic Foundation, Northwest Health Foundation, and Sightline Institute convened groups that represent and serve in communities of color, low-wealth communities, and other traditionally disenfranchised communities in late March 2016 to discuss learn about the kinds of open democracy efforts that would do the most to increase civic participation and open doors to civic and electoral leadership in Portland.