Dear colleagues and friends,
I am personally saddened and angered by the blatant inequalities, racism, and senseless loss of precious lives, most recently of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, that have captured the attention of our country and the world. From a place of privilege, as healthcare providers, we are reminded daily of the powerful social determinants of health and the striking disparities that follow skin color.
Racism is the pandemic that continues to threaten – implicitly and explicitly – the health and well-being of our communities. AUGS is not a political organization, nor is racism political. Bias, intolerance, and racism transcend politics. Moreover, for AUGS, advocacy is a fundamental pillar of our mission. Being an ally is the work we do. We stand united in this advocacy and alliance.
As members of the medical community and AUGS, we know that recent events enrage the minds and break the hearts of our members, colleagues, and staff. We know these realities are lifelong, painful assaults for many. As an organization and individual members, we must stand with the larger Black community in alliance and solidarity. We commit to listening and educating ourselves and our members to better understand the pain so many are feeling right now, and to be part of long-term solutions for real and lasting change. AUGS is committed to continuing a meaningful dialogue among our diverse membership and engaging all members to identify solutions based on fundamental cornerstones of inclusion, diversity, equality, and fairness. We also know there is much more to do.
To begin this process, I will recommend a Presidential Task Force on member equity to identify disparities and chart a path forward. Please join us on our journey to improvement and tell us how we can do this better - together. You can share your thoughts and perspectives by emailing the Board at firstname.lastname@example.org.