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Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio is preparing for large roll-out of DEI initiatives after receiving nearly one million dollars in grant funding

CINCINNATI: Today, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio announced plans to expand inclusion efforts—including the creation of a new Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion role in the organization. Thanks to a generous grant from Planned Parenthood Federation of America, along with support from another funder, the affiliate will be receiving $938,335 over three years towards our diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in Southwest Ohio. 

Southwest Ohio is one of the most diverse regions in the state. Despite this, harmful legislation and tactics like zoning and redlining in the area create striking disparities between residents of Southwest Ohio. We know these disparities include health care access and affect health outcomes in response.

At Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region, we aim to offer accessible, equitable care to those we serve. As long as health disparities continue to purvey the area, we recognize that mission cannot truly be met. So we’re doing something about it. 

That begins with our own reckoning and the long steps we must take as an organization. 

“This program is a necessary framework for the work we do every single day. Just simply, we want to emphasize that Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio is, and has been, a place for conversations about inclusion and equity. Because it matters to us. We know that if we don’t have equity and inclusion from the inside— we can’t recognize the lived experiences of the patients and staff we serve. So we’re making sure the work we do continues to elevate. More than understanding and acknowledging, we’re working to make change in our community.” 
Stephanie Dodd, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee Chair.

“It’s more than just having a committee for Equity and Inclusion. It’s an investment. Making equity a centerpiece of our strategic goals, not just in words but with actions, can improve health outcomes for patients. It’s a framework that honors our overall mission:. The fundamental freedom of all people to control their own bodies, their lives, and their futures.  We know how critical this work is—especially in Ohio. We truly believe this project will improve health outcomes because we know how much health equity is tied to disparities in our community.” 
Kersha Deibel, President & CEO

To do that, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio will be working with a consulting firm to conduct an equity scan of the organization, provide training, organize focus groups, and guide the hiring process of our first equity and inclusion leader. This will be a multi-year project that targets impacts both internally and externally with goals to advance health equity by:

 

Internally:

  • Boosting employee engagement and retention
  • Encouraging and honing cultural competency among staff
  • Increasing diversity and belonging at the leadership levels
  • Increasing diversity in donors and volunteers

 

Externally:

  • Strengthening and improving our ability to address regional health care disparities
  • Acknowledge and reckon with our own history, the history of the movement for reproductive health and rights and the irreparable damage caused to the health and lives of generations of Black people, Latino people, Indigenous people, immigrants, people with disabilities, people with low incomes, and many others.
  • Increasing diversity in number of community and corporate partnerships
  • Increasing opportunities for fundraising to support diverse Southwest Ohio communities

 

Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio looks forward to the work to come as we introduce this project; and stands in solidarity with the fearless Southwest Ohio organizations already leading the way towards equitable change.