The College recognizes the existence and impact of systemic racism and discrimination in Ontario. As the regulator for opticians across Ontario, our College is committed to working with opticians to ensure that practice environments are inclusive, tolerant, diverse, safe and equitable spaces.
Patients place their trust in health care providers. They expect to receive the best possible care, delivered in a safe, ethical, inclusive and equitable manner. Our College also understands that there are biases within our health care systems and we are here to support opticians and members of the public in identifying, correcting, and preventing these biases.
The College’s Board of Directors is committed to a sustained focus on diversity and inclusion within the College and continues to seek opportunities to develop initiatives and policies in this area. As part of ongoing efforts, the Board is completing a review of its policies and processes with a diversity, equity and inclusion lens. Comprehensive training on diversity, equity and inclusion for all board directors and committee members is underway. We are also finalizing a professional growth continuing education module on diversity, equity and inclusion for opticians, which we expect to introduce this summer.
Our College mandate, as regulators of the profession, also includes addressing concerns and complaints regarding registered opticians. We encourage registrants and members of the public who are aware of discriminatory behaviour within the profession to contact the College immediately.
We know that racism and discrimination is a social determinant of health and can lead to poor health outcomes for individuals who deserve to be treated with respect and dignity. The College pledges our commitment to actively work against discrimination, as an organization and in the profession, and we are confident you are all prepared to take the necessary actions to do the same. Together, we can support positive change.