As we all watched the painful events unfold in Portland and across the country over the tragic and senseless deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery we are heartbroken at the continued injustice that black members of our community experience on a daily basis. We are reminded as health leaders, professionals and individuals that we have a duty to practice advocacy with a true, honest and generous spirit. Health Share of Oregon stands with the Black community — our employees, members and partners— in the fight for equity and racial justice. We need to continue to stand in solidarity and listen with conviction and strive to do better in the face of inequities that our communities of color face every day.
We need to continue to recognize, call out, and work to repair the systems that cause continual racial, social, and economic inequalities. At Health Share, we are working to address the systemic barriers that prevent any individual from the health, happiness and equity that we believe each human being should be able to reasonably and fairly access and we all recognize there is much more to do.
Over the coming days, weeks, and months we will to continue to find ways to leverage the Health Share collaborative by identifying ways that we can bolster the parts of our health system and communities that serve members of color, particularly within the African American, Black, immigrant and refugee communities; utilize our collaborative meetings to call attention to where we can mitigate health disparities and systemic oppression; and engage all of you in identifying areas where we and our communities can do better. COVID is a clear example where communities of color are experiencing higher infection rates and higher rates of economic impact and it is our work to ensure these disparities are addressed.
That this is the time that our community needs us most. Now is not a time for paralysis or inaction, but a time to really intensify the work we are uniquely positioned to do, as the collaborative partnership that is Health Share.
This is why we’re here. This is why you’re here. This is what we do.