A Message From Aya Healthcare’s President & CEO
From slavery to the Jim Crow laws, the United States is built on a history of structural racial discrimination against African Americans. Although much progress has been made, racial inequality, social injustice and discrimination against black Americans still permeates our society, including many of our institutions. According to the Center for Policing Equity, police are two to four times more likely to use force against black Americans than white Americans.
We have all watched in horror as a police officer brutally murdered George Floyd. While we are all saddened, shocked and angered by the callus disregard for human life, the George Floyd murder has been a call to action. Black Lives Matter. Black Civil Liberties Matter. It goes beyond saying that no one should lose their life because of the color of their skin. We must also ensure that no one is pulled over, harassed or arrested because of the color of their skin.
Many of us feel sad, angry, anxious and frustrated. The challenge to overcome seems daunting. I too have looked for solutions, but none are simple. It is clear that U.S. cities and counties need to systematically reform policing. I think the protests are putting pressure on mayors around the country to take meaningful steps to facilitate police force reforms.
As an organization, Aya Healthcare will be making a donation to Campaign Zero, an organization working to facilitate police force reform and end police violence. We will also be making a donation to the Center for Policing Equity, an organization that uses data science to demonstrate police force inequity in an attempt to facilitate change. It is time to be more prescriptive with solutions that prevent one more African American citizen from being a victim of the type of racist police brutality we all witnessed against George Floyd.
As a nation, we will not solve all of our racism problems overnight. However, we must face these issues head-on, one failure point at a time, until there are none left and life as a racist becomes extremely hard in this country.
In addition to the donations, we will launch additional nursing school scholarships specifically for African American students as well as facilitate a conversation on greater healthcare equity for the African American community. Lastly, we will look at our own hiring practices and take steps to increase opportunities for African Americans within Aya.
As an organization, we are prepared to listen and find avenues to support the African American community. Aya Healthcare is committed to respecting every single human being. We abhor all discrimination based on race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and gender identity. We want to be clear that we fully support the African American community and want to make a positive contribution to heal racial inequity. We believe Black Lives Matter.