Published March 1, 2021
Faculty approved the school’s proposed Diversity and Inclusion Committee name change in the school's bylaws to the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) Committee during an All Faculty meeting on February 26, 2021.
The change comes about 18 months after the Diversity and Inclusion Taskforce became a standing committee in the School’s bylaws.
The addition of “justice” and “equity” to the committee’s name is reflective of the school’s efforts to better identify and confront the many systemic forces that contribute to inequity, injustice and lack of diversity in higher education, health care and our communities.
Social justice is a fair and just relationship between society and individuals, including distribution of wealth, power, education, health care and all other forms of personal social rights and privileges. The pursuit of justice requires us to recognize and remove barriers to resources and opportunities.
In removing these barriers, it is vital to establish equity by allocating resources and power in such a way that ensures all individuals and groups have the same opportunities. Ensuring equitable access entails recognizing that some groups and individuals are at an advantage and can more easily benefit from power and resources than others.
Establishing an equitable and just environment necessitates understanding diverse perspectives and backgrounds and creating an environment in which diverse individuals can thrive: an inclusive environment is respectful, welcoming, and supportive, and purposefully amplifies diverse voices and perspectives.
Diversity and inclusion without justice and equity are not sufficient for meaningful and enduring change. The JEDI Committee is dedicated to conscientiously evaluate the School’s deficiencies, and to work with faculty, staff, students, alumni, community partners and friends to take action to ensure our School lives up to our commitment to foster an environment that supports all individuals and that reflects our core values of integrity, collaboration, accountability, respect and excellence.
As a school, it is fundamental to our mission to challenge stereotypes, and to encourage critical thinking and diversity in thinking and ideas. A diverse, supportive, equitable and just place of learning empowers students to consider different worldviews and perspectives, and challenges them to address personal biases; it also equips students to become more conscientious and creative contributors to the community.
As a school of nursing, our efforts directly impact the communities within which we work and serve – as the largest portion of the health care workforce, it is vital that nurses are not only culturally competent, but that the workforce reflects our nation’s demographics. Such a health care workforce is better equipped to meet the unique and complex needs of each of their patients and to provide care for the whole person.
The committee name change aligns with the School’s recently established Fund for Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, which was created to support JEDI initiatives in the School of Nursing.
You can read more about the JEDI Fund and the JEDI Committee’s actions and initiatives by visiting the School of Nursing JEDI Committee webpage.