Our Commitment to Equity and Anti-Oppression
We define equity as seeking to ensure fair treatment, equality of opportunity, and fairness in access to information and resources for all. In our anti-oppressive practice, we acknowledge systemic oppression in our society and strive to confront power imbalances where none ought to exist within our organization and the communities we serve. We recognize the intersectional ways in which some communities and populations continue to be marginalized and strive to understand how this impacts access to resources and support.
Our commitment begins by acknowledging that existing disparities in health care, health outcomes, and education did not develop in a vacuum, nor do they continue to occur in a vacuum. Rather, they are the result of systemic oppression based on race, class, and other marginalized identities. On the individual level, learning about injustice is a lifelong process that encompasses active dedication towards pursuing knowledge about oneself and others as it relates to systemic oppression. On both the individual and institutional level, engaging in anti-oppressive practices will include making mistakes and learning from them; asking critical and reflective questions collecting relevant data; and facilitating and participating in ongoing dialogue to enhance our growth as an Institute community.
Addressing inequities includes making changes in professional practice, health policies, healthcare financing, and systems of care. Our aspirational goal is to develop and teach our students skills to better serve marginalized and minoritized communities in order to address existing inequities. We know these communities have unique experiences navigating spaces that were not created for them, including hospitals and institutions of higher education. In our mission to educate future health professionals, we aspire to integrate anti-oppressive practice in our policies, practices, and all aspects of our work: curriculum development, pedagogy, clinical environment, community engagement, research endeavors, administrative practices, and everyday interactions with one another. These goals include, but are not limited to:
- Building and maintaining relationships to the communities we serve by engaging and listening to the voices of these communities in a culturally responsive way.
- Continuing to examine and develop new curricula that incorporate issues of social justice for the health care practitioner.
- Adopting inclusive pedagogical approaches and collecting outcomes data on our teaching.
- Providing continuing education and professional development to our clinical partners, faculty, and staff on anti-oppression.
- Seeking input from students, faculty, staff, clinical partners, and the communities we serve on areas for growth, and new ways to leverage our assets and resources (creativity, knowledge, experience, material) for anti-oppressive work.
- Creating intentional spaces for members of the IHP community to connect and address equity issues.
- Critically examining our teaching, learning, research, policies, and practices in relation to perpetuating inequities and injustices, and confronting them by developing solutions.
- Collecting and analyzing disaggregated data to help us better understand the inequities members of the community experience, and providing targeted and equitable support to these groups.
Our commitment to equity and anti-oppressive practice serves as a pledge of our shared responsibility to challenge systemic barriers within our learning community and in the health care system.