Seattle Children's 21-page anti-racism plan: 5 things to know

An independent review of Seattle Children's found the organization hasn't properly addressed systemic racism. On Sept. 1, the hospital released its action plan to "become the anti-racist organization you expect us to be," Susan Betcher, hospital board chair, and CEO Jeff Sperring, MD, said.

Five things to know:

1. The 21-page action plan is in response to 11 findings and recommendations made by law firm Covington & Burling, which led the independent investigation into claims of systemic racism at Seattle Children's. The investigation found that racial disparities persist in Seattle Children's leadership, promotions and voluntary termination practices, among other policies. 

2. Seattle Children's action plan promises to hire and sustain a diverse workforce, include patients and the community in equity discussions and make itself "a learning laboratory for health equity initiatives," such as advising U.S. News & World Report's equity work group.

3. "As Seattle Children's makes measurable progress toward becoming the organization we aspire to be, we will work tirelessly to rebuild trust with our workforce, patients and families, and the community," Ms. Betcher and Dr. Sperring said.

4. The action plan comes after Seattle Children's employees and the Washington Black Lives Matter Alliance called for Ms. Betcher and Dr. Sperring to resign over the investigation's findings. 

5. The investigation was prompted by Ben Danielson, MD, who cited institutional racism as his reason for resigning as the medical director of one of the hospital's clinics last year. 

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