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Statement from the Department About Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)

Similar to other departments that have spoken out, we are disappointed in the University of Iowa’s response to President Trump’s Executive Order 13950.

The Department of Pediatrics is strongly committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We value the diversity of our faculty and staff, students, and patients. These are not just words in our mission on our website. These are our core values. By abiding with this executive order, we are giving into systemic racism. Diversity training is not a political issue, rather a matter of personal responsibility. Similarly, Black Lives Matter, is not a political statement but a statement of values. When we, along with many employees of the hospital, knelt on the lawn in support of White Coats for Black Lives, we meant it.

UI Health Care’s vision and mission indicates “changing medicine, changing lives”.  We are committed to making everyone’s lives better. It is well documented that health care disparities and bias exist and that less advantaged groups, primarily Black, Latinx, and indigenous people have the worse health outcomes. Many of these disparities are caused by implicit bias, structural inequities, and social determinants of health. That is why diversity training, which includes implicit bias training, culturally responsive healthcare, and teaching about social determinants of health is important.

We appreciate the response that was issued earlier and want to plead with you to stand up against hate. Actions speak louder than words and the actions of the University of Iowa need to communicate that we do care about all persons of underrepresented minorities in our community.

Friday, October 9, 2020