Values that Drive Our Work
We believe that true opportunity requires a commitment to a core set of values. These values are integrally related to the principle of human rights. Equal treatment, a voice in societal decisions, a chance to start over, and the tools to meet our own basic needs are not just good policy ideas. They are the right of every human being simply by virtue of his or her humanity.
Opportunity – Everyone deserves a fair chance to achieve their full potential. Our nation can be a place where everyone enjoys full opportunity.
Mobility – Where we start out in life should not determine where we end up. Inherent in mobility is the belief that everyone who works hard should be able to advance and participate fully in society. Mobility requires that our nation's class distinctions be fluid and unpredictable over generations, while moving forward as a society.
Equality – The benefits and burdens of society should not depend on what we look like or where we come from. Equality requires that we celebrate our differences while challenging stereotypes and breaking down barriers. Equality is both the absence of discrimination and the presence of fairness.
Voice – We should all have a say in the decisions that affect us. Our voices must be heard in voting booths, at public forums and across the media. Expanding opportunity requires that we listen to the ideas, hopes, and dreams of everyone who lives here.
Redemption – We all grow and change over time, and we need a chance to start over when things go wrong. To foster redemption, we must provide conditions that allow people to develop, to rebuild, and to reclaim full responsibility for their lives.
Community – We share responsibility for each other, and the strength of our nation depends on the vibrancy and cohesiveness of our diverse population. With a strong sense of community, we understand that opportunity is not only about personal success; it is also about our success as a people.
Security – We should all have the tools to meet our own basic needs and the needs of our families. Without economic and social security, it is impossible to access the other rights and responsibilities society has to offer. Security is at the core of our human dignity.
These values are part of our human rights, the rights we all have simply by virtue of our humanity. As the founders of our nation recognized when they declared that we are all created equal, fulfilling our unalienable human rights is essential to realizing the American promise of opportunity for all.