Global Diversity Awareness Month: Oxford PharmaGenesis colleagues promote awareness and education

28 October 2021

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This October, Oxford PharmaGenesis has been marking Global Diversity Awareness Month with a programme of educational and awareness-raising activities coordinated by and for our colleagues.

The activities – which include presentations, workshops and social events – have been arranged in response to feedback from our colleagues calling for more education and training in diversity awareness.

Taking place across Oxford PharmaGenesis offices globally, the initiative celebrates and promotes diversity, helping colleagues to become more conscious of diversity-related issues and ensuring that the company continues to live up to its core values.

Coordinated by the company’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) team, colleagues have rolled out a programme of events, including:

  • a presentation by our CEO Chris Winchester and an external EDI consultant about promoting EDI in the med comms sector (based on an article co-written for the MAP newsletter)
  • a presentation by African Hospital Libraries – a charity supported by Oxford PharmaGenesis – on supporting quality
    healthcare in Sierra Leone
  • a webinar from the company’s Open Pharma team on plain language summaries during Open Access Week
  • an EDI ‘takeover’ of company meetings, placing an emphasis on diversity and inclusion
  • an exploration of the short story collection Love in Colour by Bolu Babalola in the Book Club run by colleagues
  • a takeover of the Social Committee’s monthly social event, with a focus on EDI.

Colleagues who need to access information about the initiative can visit a dedicated EDI intranet page – also created following colleague feedback – where they can find resources, training sessions and volunteer opportunities.

US HR Director Jill Wund is the company’s Global Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Lead. She says:

“This fantastic programme of activities has been driven by colleagues. It complements our evolving infrastructure, where we’ve made many changes in recent years to embed EDI within daily operations, from reviewing our HR policies for inclusive language to implementing unconscious bias training for interviews.

“We continue to listen to our colleagues and drive appropriate action, to ensure Oxford PharmaGenesis remains a great place to work for everyone.”

CEO Chris Winchester says:

“Focusing on diversity helps us, as HealthScience communicators, to address the needs of all the patients that we and our clients are here to serve.

“It’s inspiring to see our colleagues taking action to keep making progress in this important area.”

The Global Diversity Awareness Month initiative ties in with other EDI-related activities at Oxford PharmaGenesis. During the recent US Mental Health Awareness Week, the company’s Mental Health First Aiders put together a video about removing stigma from mental health. Also taking place this month is ‘Make a Difference Day’, to celebrate colleagues who make time to help the local community and charities close to their heart.

Oxford PharmaGenesis is currently sponsoring the Patient Diversity Media Campaign run by the non-profit patient organization CISCRP to help to provide information about clinical trials to minority groups. The campaign aims to encourage more diverse participation in clinical trials to enable medical breakthroughs that benefit people of all backgrounds. And, with support from two of our clients, we’re running a Q&A session on addressing racial disparities in healthcare for Black Americans.