Marking Black History Month 2024 across ETHP

Across East Toronto Health Partners (ETHP), our member organizations are dedicated to building a more equitable, more inclusive healthcare system that better serves people in East Toronto. 

This involves marking Black History Month by celebrating the achievements of our Black colleagues and communities and offering learning opportunities that help our teams address anti-Black racism, which contributes to inequities across our health system and beyond. Here are some of the ways our partners recognized Black History Month this year. 

Michael Garron Hospital 

Michael Garron Hospital’s (MGH) Inclusion Alliance and Black History Month Planning Committee hosted a diverse set of events and activities inspired by the theme of building bridges. The theme of building bridges helps advance MGH’s efforts in fostering an environment and practices that serve as a bridge to better experiences and outcomes for African, Black and Caribbean communities. 

Events and activities included a virtual book club discussion about Legacy: A Black Physician Reckons with Racism in Medicine by Dr. Uché Blackstock 30-minute live lunchtime Afro-Cuban dance led by AfroLatino Dance Company, Black History Makers Gallery display and more. 

In addition, MGH hosted a virtual speaker series that was open to MGH staff, physicians, learners, volunteers and East Toronto community members. The speaker series featured a lineup of inspirational Black speakers including Althea Jones, Registered Midwife and President-Elect of Association of Ontario Midwives; Dr. Modupe Tunde-Byass, OB/GYN and President of Black Physicians of Canada; and Lanre Tunji-Ajayi, MSM, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sickle Cell Awareness Group of Ontario. 

Unity Health Toronto 

Unity Health Toronto kicked off Black History Month with an update from President and CEO Dr. Tim Rutledge on the organization’s efforts to combat anti-Black racism in 2023 and their plans for the year ahead. The organization hosted several events, including healing circle sessions for Black-identified staff, hybrid drumming and healing workshops, and a Black inventors museum, which provided an opportunity for staff and physicians to learn more about inventors of Black African descent. 

Teams at Providence Healthcare hosted a Black music tribute showcase, which celebrated Black artists and their contributions to music, and prepared education materials and gift bags for staff and physicians to learn more about Black History. Throughout the month, the organization, led by the Office of Anti-Racism, Equity and Social Accountability, encouraged staff, physicians and learners to complete the new online anti-Black racism training module, which serves as an introduction to understanding and combatting anti-Black racism. To continue their efforts, the organization will host a panel discussion in March on improving Black Health. 

VHA Home HealthCare 

VHA Home HealthCare (VHA) hosted a series of events for team members across the GTA. The gatherings celebrated the impactful contribution of Black, African and Caribbean individuals throughout history and within our organization through food, music and art – while also providing an opportunity for engagement, sharing and connection.  

This month, VHA is also proud to have published its Diversity Equity and Inclusion Report for 2023. The report provides a comprehensive and intersectional analysis of how inclusion is experienced in the workplace and how VHA’s ongoing work in the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion space is making a meaningful difference for staff and service providers. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *