Alert: this is an alert
This week as our nation come to terms with the outcome of the Derek Chauvin trial, CareOregon CEO Eric C. Hunter sent this note to internal staff. We are sharing this note externally as part of our effort to be more transparent about who we are at CareOregon, what we believe, and the world we’re working to build with our community.
We believe that as a company and as a country, it is time for us to all pitch in to dismantle institutional biases and racism.
This week is one of competing emotions for many of you. It is one of a SPIRITED celebration and the sobering closing of a chapter on one of the most polarizing issues of 2020. While we celebrate each other and the amazing culture and mission of CareOregon, our nation must come to grips with the outcome of the Derek Chauvin trial over the death of George Floyd. It was a tragedy. It was preventable. It was, as a jury concluded yesterday, criminal. A man died as a result of the harm committed against him by an individual who swore an oath to protect and serve.
Like it is for me, I am sure that this is an emotional time for you as we all process this event, the reaction and the aftermath. If you need support, I’d like to remind you of your Employee Assistance Program which will help you connect with a counselor.
I’d also like to acknowledge the importance of this moment to our collective work. This month, we celebrate our 27th anniversary. This is an opportunity to pause, reflect on the past year, and how far we’ve come. Like the justice system, the American health care system is another set of institutions that have historically marginalized communities and, through action or inaction, negatively impacted life outcomes for those we serve.
We’ve made some great strides this year, but I want to be clear that this verdict might be the closing of a chapter, but it’s not the end of this story. I’d like to challenge you to think critically about what Equity, Diversity & Inclusion means to you and your work.
As we work to dismantle institutional racism, it is going to take all of us. So please join me in building a better tomorrow.