UVA Physicians Group Board of Directors

Statement of Commitment: Diversity, Inclusion and Racial Equity

 

The following statement of commitment establishes the UVA Physicians Group (UPG) Board of Directors’ position and values with regard to Diversity, Inclusion and Racial Equity, and provides a foundation for sustained action and accountability in the interest of organizational, institutional and societal growth and transformation.

 

The UPG Board of Directors unequivocally condemns systemic racism and discrimination of any kind, and stands in support of – and in unity with – all members of our UPG, UVA Health, University and broader communities in shared and determined pursuit of a more equitable future for all.

 

Our progress is dependent upon the understanding that our collective strength is enhanced by the diversity among us, and our willingness to shed light on past and present injustices and the undercurrent of complacency which propels them.

 

For centuries, systemic racism and discrimination have found amnesty in our regional and institutional shadows and have been both subtly and overtly woven into our infrastructure. Our society and our health care system have been culturally and materially damaged by pervasive and corrosive inequities which continue today, disproportionately impacting communities of color and other minorities. For the physicians and providers whom we support as the governing body of UPG, social disparities in healthcare are humanized each day by the patients and families who seek clinical care at UVA. It is incumbent upon us to do better by them and for them.

 

As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. observed, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” In the spirit of Dr. King’s sentiment and its ongoing relevance to our world, the UPG Board of Directors hereby commits to the following:

 

  • We will endeavor to be explicit and proactive in our discussions on Diversity, Inclusion and Racial Equity – and to advocate for those who are or may be adversely affected by environmental and systemic racism and other forms of discrimination.
  • We will work to help implement the UVA Racial Equity Task Force Recommendation that UVA adopt an equity scorecard within each school and major operational/administrative division, including the Medical Center.
  • We will work to expose areas of bias which lie within our purview as the governing body of UPG, and take action to mitigate the damage associated with those systems and policies.
  • We will pursue specific and meaningful information and expertise related to social disparities in healthcare, so that we may act collectively to protect and enhance the wellbeing of vulnerable populations in our community.
  • We will partner with the UPG employee-led Diversity, Inclusion and Racial Equity Advisory Council in its mission to lead internal improvement efforts and effect positive cultural development.  
  • We will actively seek opportunities and partnerships for meaningful engagement and impact in our external community. 
  • We will support equitable employment and governance policies and practices which enhance the diversity of UPG so that the workforce (including clinicians) may be more representative of the community it serves.
  • We will prioritize diversity across attributes in UPG Board of Directors and Board Committee composition and membership.
  • We will collaborate with UPG Executive Leadership to implement sustained accountability measures which aim to evaluate near- and long-term progress in pursuit of UPG Diversity, Inclusion and Racial Equity goals.
  • We will pursue educational and resource opportunities to help us identify our own roles in perpetuating bias, and which provide information on systemic inequities, so that as a board we may begin to affect consequential change.
  • We will act as ambassadors of these cultural ideals within our own spheres of influence.

 

Like the work ahead of us on a local and global scale, this document will evolve with our circumstances – but our commitment to equity and justice will remain steadfast. By healing each of us, we help heal all of us.