About The Work Group

About Governor Inslee’s Poverty Reduction Work Group

Governor Inslee’s Poverty Reduction Work Group (PRWG) was created via Directive in November 2017. PRWG is co-led by the state departments of Commerce, Employment Security, and Social & Health Services, in partnership with tribal and urban Indians, state racial and ethnic commissions, employers, community-based organizations, legislators, advocates, and philanthropy. A steering committee made up of 22 people reflecting the demographic and geographic experience of poverty provides critical oversight to PRWG and contributed substantially to the development and prioritization of recommendations. The groups have met monthly since their inception. Full documentation of all PRWG meetings can be found on Governor Inslee’s PRWG issues page.

The Importance of the Steering Committee

Recognizing that people experiencing poverty are the foremost experts in their lives, PRWG prioritized elevating the leadership and expertise of those most affected by poverty in the development of strategies and recommendations for the 10-year strategic plan. Toward that end, the group unanimously decided to create a steering committee whose role was to set priorities for the plan and provide honest and critical feedback throughout the process.

The 22-member Steering Committee was convened by PRWG member Statewide Poverty Action Network. Membership includes people from urban, suburban, rural, and tribal areas in Washington state, and has diverse representation from communities most affected by poverty, including: Indigenous, Black and Brown people, people with disabilities, LGBTQ, immigrants and refugees, and single parents. The steering committee held monthly, full-day meetings to determine priorities, and elected two co-chairs to represent them in the full PRWG meetings. The Steering Committee provided the knowledge and expertise PRWG needed to develop a strategic plan that, if implemented, would actually work. They are also the heart and soul of the effort – grounding the larger group in what it means to experience poverty in Washington state, and why listening to people most affected by it is essential for us to succeed in reducing it.

Play Video
WA state capital building
Reducing poverty and inequality is an essential investment in the collective well-being of our communities and economy.
For every $1 invested in reducing child poverty, there is a $7 return to the economy.

Thank you for reading about the work group. Learn more about the Poverty Reduction process.