On December 9, representatives from the PharmaPride student group, Dean Dolovich, and other members of the Faculty’s leadership attended a small event to celebrate the display of the progress Pride flag in the atrium of the Leslie L. Dan Faculty of Pharmacy building.
The opportunity to display the flag was brought forward by PharmaPride earlier in the fall to further promote diversity and inclusion in the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy community.
Through efforts like today’s event, we have begun to pave a way for reparations and truly build a more inclusive and safer space in pharmacy."
"As the President of PharmaPride I wanted to thank the Faculty for their efforts in seeing this project to fruition. PharmaPride has worked to promote BIPOC and LGBTQ+ visibility, education and awareness and it is through projects like these that we are able to build solidarity and truly make a difference,” said Al-Amin Ahamed, PharmD student and President of PharmaPride. “These already vulnerable communities have a deep history of discrimination and racism when accessing healthcare that have led to a decrease in positive health outcomes and an increase in mistrust. Through efforts like today’s event, we have begun to pave a way for reparations and truly build a more inclusive and safer space in pharmacy."
“It is my hope that having the inclusive Pride flag visible in our Faculty atrium signals to our community our intention to continue to deepen and broaden our efforts around equity, diversity, and inclusion.”
Dean Lisa Dolovich also attended the event and shared the impact she wants the flag display to have. “It is my hope that having the inclusive Pride flag visible in our Faculty atrium signals to our community our intention to continue to deepen and broaden our efforts around equity, diversity, and inclusion,” she said. “We know that diversity drives excellence and that fostering inclusive spaces is crucial to supporting the success of our students, faculty, and staff and also to our education and research endeavors more broadly.”
Prior to the event, the team consulted with Allison Burgess, Director of the University of Toronto’s Sexual and Gender Diversity Office, who provided important insight and expertise. “It is critical that all of us at the University of Toronto commit to increasing our efforts for broader equitable and inclusive work which recognizes and celebrates our diverse communities,” said Burgess. “This is just the start: we are all also responsible for doing the hard work of unlearning and of repairing histories and current practices of marginalization and discrimination. Congratulations on this important commitment to 2SLGBTQ+ inclusion and to building communities of belonging.”
The inclusive pride flag hangs in a student study space visible from the main atrium of the pharmacy building. “This is a fantastic example of our students partnering with faculty and staff to visibly express our commitment to inclusive spaces in our building,” said Natalie Crown, Director of the PharmD Program, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy.
Dean Dolovich also shared the potential for future opportunities as the Faculty embarks on building renovations in the near future. “Part of these renovations will include the building atrium and it is our intention that as part of that process we will continue to engage and consult on how we can present and display symbols of inclusion in our new spaces in meaningful ways,” she said.
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