Inclusion and Diversity
The mission of the Children’s Mercy Research Institute (CMRI) is to accelerate transdisciplinary research that improves the health and wellbeing of children everywhere. This encompasses children of all ages, genders, sexual orientations, races, ethnicities, physical and mental abilities, and social and economic backgrounds. Inclusion and diversity among research teams, participants, families, suppliers and community partners is essential to fulfill this mission.
Attention to inclusion and diversity is critical to:
- Foster positive relationships and engagement with communities that have traditionally not had full access to or representation in research.
- Enhance recruitment and retention of participants from historically underserved communities.
- Leverage broader expertise and perspectives that increase the quality of research and ensure culturally appropriate, patient- and community-focused interventions.
- Ensure that advances which result from research benefit all children.
Inclusion and diversity priorities
Children's Mercy is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive workforce. Our patients and families come from all walks of life, and so do we. We know that our greatest strengths come from the people who make up our team so we hire qualified people from a wide variety of backgrounds, not just because it's the right thing to do, but because it makes our hospital stronger, our patient care more compassionate, and our research better.
If you share our values and our enthusiasm for your service, you will find a home at CM. In recruiting our team, we welcome the unique contributions that you can bring, including education, ideas, culture, ethnicity, race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, age, languages spoken, veteran status, color, religion, disability and beliefs.
We are committed to fostering inclusion and diversity among research teams through:
- Partnering with Employee Resource Groups for historically underserved and underrepresented populations to support inclusion and diversity efforts.
- Increasing the recruitment and retention of diverse and bilingual faculty, research coordinators, and research assistants.
- Employing best practices for increasing inclusion and diversity in all search processes (e.g., implementing the Faculty Search Committee Diversity Standards to recruit and evaluate faculty candidates, including the “Ability to contribute to the CMRI’s inclusion and diversity mission” as a central scored criteria for all candidates, designating a diversity advocate on search committees and expanding outlets where positions are posted).
- Providing mentorship opportunities for diverse junior faculty, research staff and students.
- Promoting educational outreach to the next generation of researchers.
- Promoting diversity education and training for research teams, including Academic Scholarship Conference (ASC) and Grand Rounds presentations focused on inclusion, social determinants of health and underserved populations.
- Assessing the demographics of ASC and Grand Round speakers each year to increase inclusion and diversity.
We are committed to the recruitment and retention of diverse research participants to ensure all children and families have access to innovative therapeutics, treatments and interventions. We will do this by:
- Requiring implicit bias and anti-racism education and training for all research faculty, staff and administrators to promote a culture of inclusion and diversity in the CMRI.
- Fostering the use of the “Recruiting Diverse Populations in Research” Tool Kit by research teams to maximize recruitment of diverse research participants.
- Conducting an annual review of the demographics of research participants enrolled in studies to assess the levels of research participation among diverse groups. Set and access progress towards yearly goals to increase diversity.
We are committed to designing and implementing research studies that are responsive to the priorities of our communities. We are committed to partnering with patients, families and community members to ensure transparency in research activities from study inception to dissemination. We will do this by:
- Supporting engagement of diverse patients, families, and communities in the design, implementation and dissemination of research through the CMRI Patient, Family and Community Advisory Board. Engagement of family and community members in research is important because it:
- Ensures research questions align with the priorities of our communities.
- Enhances inclusion of diverse voices at all stages of the research process.
- Improves participant recruitment and retention.
- Helps establish research procedures and materials that are clear and easily understood by patients and families regardless of educational level or preferred language.
- Creates opportunities to share research results with diverse communities.
Health disparities are a significant public health concern. We are committed to promoting research that addresses health disparities, inequities and the social determinants of health (e.g., race, education, income and access to care) to improve the health and wellbeing of marginalized and underserved groups.
- Encourage teams to collect standardized demographic data associated with social determinants of health in all research studies.
- Educate researchers on the appropriate use of ethnicity and race data in research studies and encourage the appropriate use of these variables in all studies.
We are committed to partnering with businesses that have deep respect for and demonstrated expertise in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion practices within the communities we represent and serve. We value our partnership with diverse suppliers including but not limited to business owned by women, people of color, veterans, disabled veterans and members of LGBTQ communities.