We in the BAND Lab feel grateful to be part of a movement of scientists, educators, and mental health professionals investigating novel psychiatric treatments for some of the most challenging conditions. We aim to maintain a workspace that honors diverse perspectives and life experiences so that our lab team, as well as the study participants we serve, are truly representative for our multicultural world.
While we strive to be inclusive of all people, we acknowledge the history of violence and oppression that has targeted marginalized groups, particularly BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) and the LGBTQ+ communities, both within and outside of research settings. Within clinical research, we recognize that exploitation through racism, sexism, classism, and homophobia has made many people from marginalized groups feel mistrustful and unwelcome. We also honor that while many communities have experienced this maltreatment, the ongoing oppression and racial trauma that communities of color endure remains of paramount concern. As leaders in clinical research whose mission centers on helping to strengthen social connections between individuals and communities, we recognize our role in this injustice and our responsibility to help counter it. To live our values and do right by the diverse communities we serve, we commit to taking action.
As part of our mission toward social justice within clinical trials and psychosocial research, our lab is committed to taking concrete steps to promote equity and inclusivity in our workspace.
Toward this goal, we pledge to:
- extend education, outreach, and conversation to BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and other marginalized groups so that people who might otherwise feel excluded feel welcome to participate in our studies and research community
- take seriously UCSF, VA, and NCIRE's view that diversity among our staff and personnel is integral to our achievement of excellence. As such, we commit ourselves to removing barriers to lab recruitment, retention, and advancement of professionals that have disproportionately excluded marginalized populations and led them to be consistently underrepresented in science.
- include sociodemographically diverse samples in our studies so that our findings are generalizable to the multicultural people in our world. Toward this goal, we will aim to match the characteristics of our samples to the demographic makeup of the multicultural populations we aim to serve.
- create funding for needs-based financial support so that people from marginalized groups who might otherwise be excluded from participating in research are more able to be included in our studies
- provide diversity education and training to our staff so that our team continues to expand our worldview toward perspectives rooted in cultural humility
- create avenues for lab staff and trainees to submit regular, anonymous feedback about the inclusivity of lab practices and structures
As a lab operating in San Francisco, we honor the Ramaytush Ohlone people - the original custodians of this land on which we work and live. We pay our respects to this community for their historical stewardship over this land and give gratitude to the community members who continue to call the Bay Area their home.
In an effort to foster connection with this land and its original inhabitants, we commit ourselves to allocating a portion of our funding to inviting members of the Ramaytush Ohlone community to provide our team with consultation and education about their culture, customs, and connection to this land. This commitment, along with the steps outlined in our Pledge above, are some of the ways we aim to prioritize social justice within psychosocial research.
If you wish to learn more about the Ramaytush Ohlone community's history and current projects, please visit this website: http://www.ramaytush.com/