With recent events shaking our country and making us all reflect on who we are and who we want to be as a country, Life West, with the support of the President and Board of Regents, is taking committed actions to increase awareness and address racial discrimination. Here is the Life West commitment.
Action steps we have taken internally:
- More than two years ago, engaged a consultancy to discover who we are as a community and how we need to change in regard to our diversity, inclusion, equity, and racism.
- Appointed a Diversity and Inclusion Officer. This position is currently held by Annette Walker Ed.D.
- Unconscious Bias training for the entire community.
- Listening Circles to train and transform our community of students, faculty, and staff.
- New Inclusive Language Policy to bring attention to unconscious bias and discrimination.
- New Inclusive Patient Adjusting Policy to bring clarity and sensitivity to interactions all our students and faculty have with each other and our patients.
- Mandatory annual Diversity and Inclusion training for all employees.
- Online Diversity and Inclusion Network (DIN) providing resources, education, and an active conversation for our community.
- Physical plant changes such as non-gendered bathroom and visual imagery.
- Standardized technique and Health Center dress codes to be more inclusive.
- Focus on hiring people of color at all levels of the campus. During the last 12 months, 70% of our staff hires have been from communities of color.
- Established the Student American Black Chiropractic Association on campus in 2018.
- Embedded Diversity and Inclusion in our 2019-2025 Strategic Plan.
What we will now be embarking on:
- Increasing student, faculty, and staff recruitment in under-represented minority populations.
- Increasing recruitment of first-generation students.
- Creating a digital marketing campaign to recruit black students.
- Establishing Life West Chiropractic Health Centers in under-represented communities in the Bay Area and throughout the world.
- Deepening our relations with the American Black Chiropractic Association.
- Establishing relationships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities and other racially diverse businesses and higher education institutions.
- Creating mentoring and role model programs for under-represented students.
- Embedding understanding and sensitivity regarding racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion in our curriculum.
- Creating authentic educational programs around racism for our students, faculty, staff, and administration.
- Upgrading aesthetic surroundings on campus to interest and attract minority students, faculty, and staff.
- Publishing research on the diversity and inclusion policy, process, and effectiveness on our campus.
Life West will continue to keep working to develop and grow our community in a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion, and racial awareness, accountable leadership, and policies. The events around us are a reminder that this work is urgent and that the need is now.
In Lasting Purpose,
Silvia Dueñas Bielser
Diversity and Inclusion Officer
Life Chiropractic College West