Equity acknowledges that some communities—especially those that are historically underserved, underrepresented, or marginalized—face unique barriers as they seek to gain access to opportunities and resources in society, while other communities have enjoyed systemic privileges that offered advantageous access to opportunities and resources.  Because of physical or societal barriers, many individuals are in reality deprived of the ability to participate fully in society and exercise the freedom to make certain life choices.  Justice and fairness require that society recognize that these barriers exist, and, to the extent possible, that they should be mitigated or removed and that there is a more equitable distribution of power.  Equity serves the broader goal that each member of society enjoys the freedom to secure the benefits of life, liberty, and happiness.