Our Commitment to Diversity & Equity

Since inception, Federated Health Charities (FHC) has been dedicated to raising funds for its charity members to support health education and awareness, medical research, and client and patient services for all Ontarians

This past year, FHC has had the opportunity to engage in important conversations with members of the Ontario Public Service (OPS) Diversity Councils and the Black Ontario Public Service Employees Network regarding systemic racism in the health not-for-profit sector. 

We are thankful to these groups for opening a dialogue with us that has brought to light historic inequities.  These conversations have allowed FHC and its member charities to better focus on health inequities, particularly within the Black and Indigenous communities. 

As an organization we recognize the links between structural anti-Black and anti-Indigenous racism and health inequities and how this leads to poorer health outcomes for Black and Indigenous communities.  This structural racism can take the form of decreased access to funding, lack of awareness of health issues that are prevalent in Black and Indigenous communities, fewer supports available to combat health concerns, and a lack of Black and Indigenous voices involved in community health decisions. 

FHC and its charity members recognized the need for additional work to be done within the federation to ensure our membership was as diverse as the province it aims to serve.  A year ago, we made four specific commitments to move us towards this goal.  Here is what we have achieved:

 

  1. Taking immediate action to begin filling some of the gaps in our membership list by onboarding a charity that focuses on a prevalent health issue for Black Ontarians.

Status: Complete.  In 2020 we welcomed the Sickle Cell Awareness Group of Ontario to the FHC membership.

 

  1. Taking steps to increase OPS representation on our Board of Directors, as well as ensuring that Board members appointed by FHC member charities reflect the diversity of Ontario.

Status: In process.  In the final stages of recruitment for 5 additional OPS Board positions.  Completed the redevelopment of the contract between FHC and its member charities, outlining diversity expectations for Board appointees.

 

  1. Striking a Task Force to focus on reviewing existing FHC governance and onboarding policies. Objectives will include: creating governance models that reflect key elements of cultural safety and anti-oppression, amending our onboarding process to ensure it is not contributing to existing funding barriers, creating an ongoing process for assessing gaps in our membership against prevailing health issues that affect Black and Indigenous communities, and developing a more proactive and responsive charity recruitment process.

Status: Complete.  Developed a Charity Onboarding Policy to enable FHC to be proactive in assessing membership gaps and outreach to underserved communities and an Incoming Charity Fee & Reserve Fund Payment Policy to reduce financial barriers for involvement for underfunded charities.

 

  1. Developing a minimum requirement for our member charities regarding their diversity and inclusion policies and practices as well as better communication and promotion of the work our charities are doing to serve health issues affecting Black and Indigenous communities.

Status: In Process.  Struck a Task Force to determine reasonable minimum requirements for member charities and a process for implementation.

 

FHC is committed to ensuring they provide a vehicle for which OPS employees can contribute to the charities that best represent the health issues most important to them. We are proud of the steps we have taken this year, but it is only the beginning.  These steps have laid the track for long-term changes, have opened the door for ongoing conversations, and have strengthened our commitment to better fulfill our mission of supporting the health of all Ontarians.

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For general questions:

Sarah Wood
Executive Director
437-925-6227
sarah.wood2@ontario.ca

Address

315 Front St. West, 5th Floor
Toronto, ON
M7A 0B8

Federated Health Charities White Logo

For general questions:

Sarah Wood
Executive Director
437-925-6227
sarah.wood2@ontario.ca

Address

315 Front St. West, 5th Floor
Toronto, ON
M7A 0B8

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