At Heart & Stroke, we believe in equity, diversity, and inclusion; it’s embedded in our values and our core mission work to support all people in Canada to lead healthier lives. We are committed to applying this principle to cultivate an organization that embraces and supports diversity among our employees and volunteers at all levels.
From a mission perspective, we know that a person’s health is impacted by social inequities and systemic racism. In the past few years, we’ve made progress with our work to address inequities related to women’s heart and brain health, to improve sex and gender representation in our research, and to advocate for health policies and system change that will benefit the most vulnerable. We have also made a commitment to health reconciliation and are supporting Indigenous organizations and communities in their efforts to achieve health equity. But we need to do much more.
We know we need to learn and grow. Change is urgently needed; we are committed to taking actions to make sustainable progress within Heart & Stroke and the communities we serve to see this change come to life.
Our overarching public message at Heart & Stroke states we need to “Beat as One” to address the myriad manifestations of heart disease and stroke. This includes beating health inequities derived from social inequities and systemic racism that deeply and unfairly impact Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour.
To lead us in this important work across the organization, we have engaged experts in equity, diversity, and inclusion whose knowledge and experience will help guide the development of a holistic and actionable strategy that aims to support and include all people. We are focusing our efforts on building and maintaining a culture that holds equity, diversity, and inclusion at its core across its programs, policies, practices and communications.
We don’t have all the answers and we know this work will take time in order to be meaningful and sustainable. We are committed to pushing for progress, learning and making changes as we move forward.