The University of Colorado Cancer Center (CU Cancer Center) acknowledges that the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus is built on the unceded lands of the Arapaho people. We likewise recognize the perseverance of the more than 70,000 American Indians representing the Southern Ute Indian, Ute Mountain Ute, Arapaho, Apache, Comanche, Shoshone, Cheyenne, and Lakota Tribes, the Navajo Nation, and more for whom Colorado is home. We acknowledge the horrendous histories of genocide and European colonization that caused historical trauma, and catalyzed systems of oppression perpetuating social, financial, emotional, and health care inequalities for Indigenous communities to this day. We commit to learning from these histories, partnering with communities and leaders, and acting with humility as we work to create more justice and equity for our Indigenous neighbors.
At the University of Colorado Cancer Center (CU Cancer Center), we deem diversity in thought, perspective, lived experiences, and backgrounds to be essential for understanding and providing world-class health and cancer care to our diverse patient populations. We are, therefore, committed to the intentional development of a diverse, equitable, inclusive, and respectful academic community and workplace. Our office of DEIA will work with faculty, staff and leadership to recruit, engage and support individuals of all races, religions, national origins, genders, gender expressions, sexual orientations, ages, as well as veterans and individuals with disabilities. We will work with diverse patients, caregivers and community advisors to ensure that our DEIA efforts facilitate equitable and optimal care for all who are served by the CU Cancer Center.
At CU Cancer Center, our shared understanding of these terms are as follows:
Diversity — Diversity refers to who is represented in the CU Cancer Center workforce. At CU Cancer Center, we encourage diversity with regards to gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, age, and physical ability, as well as neurodiversity at all levels of our staff, faculty, and leadership. We hold that diversity of staff, faculty, health care providers, and leaders leads to diversity of thought, and advancement in our mission to overcome cancer.
Equity — Equity refers to fair treatment for ALL people at the CU Cancer Center (i.e. staff, faculty, health care providers, and leaders, as well as patients, their caregivers, and families). Whereas equality indicates that all people should be treated the same, equity takes into consideration an individual’s unique circumstances. We take this to mean that we must make institutional changes in social norms, practices, and policies to ensure that work related opportunities and outcomes are equal, and that all cancer related services are equal for our diverse populations.
Inclusion — Inclusion refers to how all employees of the CU Cancer Center (i.e. staff, faculty, and leaders) experience the workplace. This includes the degree to which we are able to create a culture of belonging, empower the voices of minoritized or marginalized staff, faculty, health care providers, or leaders; and encourage meaningful contributions at all levels of CU Cancer Center.
Access — Access refers to the opportunities available for persons with disabilities. At CU Cancer Center, we work to ensure that people with disabilities acquire the same information, materials, and opportunities as people without disabilities in an equally effective manner, and with equivalent ease of use. This includes but is not limited to information technologies (IT) and information and communication technologies (ICT) for accessibility, as well as accessible design of physical facilities.
To ensure that all aspects of cancer innovation, discovery, prevention, early detection, multidisciplinary care, education, and outreach at the CU Cancer Center incorporate and uphold the fundamental values of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access.
To facilitate integration of DEIA core values and practices across the CU Cancer Center by working toward the following aims:
Miria Kano, PhD
Associate Director, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Access
Curtis Henry, PhD
Deputy Associate Director, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Access
The CU Cancer Center and our Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Access (DEIA) acknowledge the historical oppression of minoritized and marginalized populations that continues to negatively affect the health and survival outcomes of diverse patients with cancer. Persistent health and cancer care disparities are unacceptable. We therefore must remain mindful of past and present inequities in health care, and commit to taking action to eliminate unnecessary, avoidable, unfair, and unjust barriers to cancer care. To these ends, the Office of DEIA works with CU Cancer Center leadership and community partners to ensure that principles of health equity are embedded in all levels of cancer center operations; guide cancer research to eliminate health disparities; and respond to the evolving needs of the community in order to achieve health and cancer care equity.
Our office of DEIA will work with faculty, staff, and leadership to ensure that individuals have equal opportunities to advance their careers through professional development conferences, meetings, and training.
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