Diversity and Inclusion
Equitas Health and its predecessor organizations have always aimed to provide care and services for all. We are committed to ongoing diversity and inclusion and recognize that fully realizing our mission to be the gateway to good health for those impacted by HIV, the LGBTQ+ community, and all others who seek a welcoming healthcare home is predicated on our journey toward becoming an antiracist organization.
Current and two-year data regarding race and ethnicity show that our DEI efforts are yielding results:
- As of September 2021, 36% of all 513 employees are BIPOC.
- Over the past two years, 54.4% of new hires were BIPOC.
- Of those promoted into leadership (managers, supervisors, directors, C-Suite) in 2020, 50% were BIPOC
- 55% of all staff that received a promotion that resulted in a salary increase were BIPOC.
- Of those promoted into leadership in 2021, 37.5% of directors were BIPOC.
- Of those promoted into leadership in 2021, 50% of managers/supervisors were BIPOC.
- Our current patient demographics are mirrored by the makeup of our employees, directors, C-Suite, and Board of Trustees. 27.33% of our patients are BIPOC (medical center). Currently, 25.2% of medical center employees, 37.5% of directors, 29% of C-Suite and 41% of our board of trustees are BIPOC.
- 22% of our physicians are BIPOC, 15% of nurse practitioners are BIPOC, 75% of dentists are BIPOC, 26% of mental health therapist are BIPOC. 16% of medical case managers are BIPOC. 53% of nonmedical case managers are BIPOC.
- A two year turnover average from January 2020 to September 2021 shows that 62% of turnover was white staff and 38% of turnover was BIPOC employees.
- The turnover in the Medical Centers is similar to that of other Healthcare Organizations.
- Additionally, pandemic turnover is rampant in all industries, particularly healthcare.
- We have consistently increased our BIPOC representation over the last two years.
We have been focused on building infrastructure within all levels of our organization (up to and including the Board of Trustees) to address any gaps related to workplace inequities and to further improve the accessibility of our services. Below please find a description of efforts Equitas Health has taken or is currently undertaking to further propel and enhance our work as an inclusive organization, and to set us along the path toward anti-racism.
- Implemented an operational Diversity & Inclusion strategic plan focused on three areas of improvement (Culture & Climate, People Leaders, and Human Resources). This work aligns with Equitas Health’s Board-approved Strategic Plan.
- Working to develop a Black, Indigenous and other People of Color (BIPOC) recruitment and retention pipeline program.
- Onboarded our first Director of Diversity & Inclusion.
- Working to create and implement agency-wide mentorship and sponsorship programs.
- Created a Diversity & Inclusion Committee of the Board of Trustees to support the organization’s efforts to meet the needs of its diverse staff, patients, and clients; to identify strengths and opportunities in the organization’s diversity and inclusion efforts; and to encourage organizational accountability.
- Approved our first formal Business Resource Group (BRG), named the Racial Advisory Council for Employee Equity (RACE BRG). BRGs enhance the understanding of diversity in the workplace, in healthcare and in the community, and promote an environment of inclusivity and mutual respect.
- Conducted a staff culture survey (administered by an external firm) and held senior leadership listening sessions through which BIPOC employees shared their experiences working at Equitas Health.
- Adopted an antiracism policy.
- Conducted mandatory diversity and inclusion training for all Equitas Health employees, beginning with senior leaders, followed up by additional trainings on specific topics, including recognizing microagressions. All Equitas Health employees will have received this training by the end of 2021.
- Conducted anti-racism-specific 12-hour training for many departments within Equitas Health, including Senior Leaders and Directors.
- An ongoing commitment to incident reporting of all behavior that may violate our employment, anti-harassment, anti-discrimination and/or anti-racism policies, and/or our Code of Conduct. Employees are encouraged to report such violations directly to their supervisor, but violations may also be reported through any process with which the employee is most comfortable, including any of the following methods: submitting a complaint to the employee’s supervisor or department leader, Human Resources (HR), Compliance/Legal, or completing an incident report through the online portal available to all staff, Compliance Manager, which can be anonymous. Though staff may disagree with the outcome of a particular personnel matter or be unaware of the full extent of remedial measures or corrective action when warranted, that does not mean we have not thoroughly investigated allegations.
- Provided training to Human Resources staff on best practices for investigating race-based complaints and engaged with the RACE BRG Human Resources Committee an overview of the handling of race-based complaints.
- Preparing to conduct an agency-wide compensation audit to ensure equitable pay for all staff.
- Updated our public policy priorities, which inform the initiatives for which we advocate, to reflect our commitment to racial justice. These updates include, but are not limited to, advocating for justice and public safety by promoting the appropriate allocation of funds between police departments and community based services and programs; acknowledging the over-policing and under-investment in Black, Hispanic, Indigenous or native, and other communities of color; and addressing the impact of the social determinants of health in our polices, advocacy work, programs, and services.
- Committed sponsorship funding of, as well as organizational involvement with, community organizations focused on serving people of color.
- Established Juneteenth as a paid holiday for all employees.
- Increased efforts to identify and contract with BIPOC-owned contractors.
- Engaged with the RACE BRG Marketing Committee, as well as an independent consultant, to review and improve our marketing to BIPOC communities in need of our services.