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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Project engages culturally diverse parents in Proposition 10 decisions


California’s Proposition 10, a tax on tobacco products passed in 1998, provides counties with funds to improve the health, education and school readiness of children up to age 5. A foundation-sponsored Civic Engagement Project (CEP) seeks to promote inclusive participation in Proposition 10 decisions by engaging a broad spectrum of parents and other community members. Based on our systematic evaluation of the CEP’s initial years of work, we describe six different civic engagement tools adopted by counties, strengths and weaknesses of each, and what we learned about the conditions under which they are most effective. The results illuminate a key public challenge — how to welcome culturally and linguistically diverse Californians as active and valued participants in local civic processes while obtaining meaningful guidance for decision-making.

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