Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare (MAHC) is looking for members to sit on its newest committee.

The organization’s Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Anti-Racism (IDEA) Committee is meant to make sure that everyone is getting the healthcare they deserve, according to MAHC Vice President of Operations and Chief Human Resources Officer Robert Alldred-Hughes.

“We want to bring our internal and external stakeholders together with community members to continue to develop a place where our patients receive the care they need in a way that is culturally safe,” says Alldred-Hughes. “This committee will be integral to understanding where we are currently, and where we may need to go.”

To that end, the committee’s first job will be to establish a “baseline” of where things stand right now, after which it will get to work on an “action plan” for more equitable healthcare.

“These could be things such as respecting ceremonies or rituals to take place in the hospital to something as simple as using personal pronouns a person identifies with,” he says. “These are the types of things that we’d like to hear from our community to understand what is important to them when receiving care.”

Alldred-Hughes says MAHC was inspired by the District of Muskoka’s own IDEA Committee, which was formed earlier this year. The committee will combine MAHC staff with four recruits from the community.

According to MAHC, committee members are required to be either full-time or part-time residents of Muskoka, “exemplify a commitment to the principles of diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism,” and either identify as a member of a protected group or have personal experiences with discrimination.

Alldred-Hughes says the committee is still in its early stages, but encourages community members to apply on Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare’s website. The deadline for applications is September 3rd.