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Dear Colleagues,

Next week is Pride Week, a citywide recognition of the lives and stories of Toronto's sexually diverse community. Some of our staff, patients, volunteers and students belong to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community; Pride Week is an important recognition of this community.

Pride week got me thinking of the issue of health equity. Health equity can refer to access to health care and to treatment regardless of income, gender, culture, religion or sexual preference. We face equity issues every day as health providers and I think that UHN is progressive at recognizing how cultural and personal preferences need to be respected in providing patient-centred care. Our Code of Conduct specifically states that everyone at UHN should promote a supportive and inclusive environment as well as living our values and treating everyone with respect and dignity. This code applies equally to how we treat our patients and how we treat each other.

Our Human Resources Department and Diversity Councils have worked to ensure that respect for diversity is recognized across our hospital. Respect for differences is not only crucial in treating patients - in this remarkably diverse city of Toronto - it is also crucial in ensuring that we can recruit the best staff from this community.

I'm proud to belong to an organization that is committed to providing an inclusive environment for staff and patients. Part of that respect is recognizing special events that focus on diversity. Pride Week is an important event for the LGBT community in Toronto. Please join me in wishing our LGBT colleagues well as they celebrate their diversity.

Bob

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