Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Society for the Study of Occupation: USA is committed to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion within our discipline and communities.

Anti-racism Practices in U.S. Based Occupational Science Advocacy, Research, & Education

In 2020, SSO:USA hosted a virtual event: "Racial Equity in Occupational Science: A Virtual Conversation for Strategy-Building". This event was recorded and can be viewed here. During this event, guest panelists, society members, and attendees discussed racial inequity within our communities and disciplinary practices in the U.S. Notes were taken from both the panel and subsequent small group discussions which focused on issues of Advocacy & Justice, Research, and Education. These notes were condensed and collated to highlight various emergent strategies across these areas. These ideas will be the foundation on which SSO:USA builds concrete, measurable, and realistic goals for our society in relation to antiracism as well as providing direction for our newly formed Ad-Hoc Committee on Equity and Inclusion. This committee has also been tasked with developing mechanisms and governance that address other injustices including but not limited to, ableism and gender discrimination within our work. Further details about this committee can be found below.

To read more about the ideas created from the 2020 Virtual Event, please click here.

To view the 2020 Virtual Event, please visit our YouTube Channel.

Ad-Hoc Committee on Equity and Inclusion

In September 2021, SSO:USA's Board of Directors established an Ad-Hoc Committee to address and improve upon diverse representations within our societal infrastructure as well as the discipline of Occupational Science within the U.S. context. The charge for the Ad-Hoc reads as follows:

Purpose: To advance the work of the Society for the Study of Occupation: USA in addressing and improving equity and inclusion within the society’s infrastructure, activities, and contributions to occupational science in the US context.

Goal: By the annual conference of 2022, propose concrete and practical long-term structures within the society to facilitate action and accountability in strategic priorities related to equity and inclusion, in this instance particularly focusing on antiracism but with the expectation that these structures could be used to work on other oppressive structures.

The Committee will need to:

  • Review and prioritize strategies identified for antiracism work in the society.
  • Review and examine other societies’ or associations’ approaches to mechanisms for accountability and action for equity and inclusion
  • Develop and propose strategic and concrete steps forward in relation to:
    • Structures and policies within SSO Governance
    • Structures and policies within SSO Committees and Membership
    • Mechanisms for tracking achievement of goals for equity and inclusion
    • Mechanisms of accountability to ensure movement in the work
  • Develop realistic timelines for implementation of these structures and work toward goals
  • Utilize antiracism strategies and goals to exemplify the implementation of these proposed structures and processes for the society.
  • Report progress to the SSO Board every 3 months