Duke Health Stands Against Racism, Bias, and Hate

Our Pledge to Our Patients, Our People, and the Communities We Serve

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Good health doesn’t begin in the hospital or the clinic. It starts in our communities, our homes, our schools, and our workplaces. It involves mind, body, and spirit. Caring for all three is the reason Duke Health exists. In the Duke Health family, we believe that racism is a public health crisis and that our communities have no place for hatred. We believe that delivering exceptional care, groundbreaking research, and top-notch education requires us to identify forms of racism and hate and to join forces against them. We are committed to working together to do just that.

Health care is more than a job — it’s a calling. In answering that call, we’ve dedicated our lives to advancing the health of everyone and promoting healthy communities. Each of us has a moral responsibility to stand against racism and hate in all its forms, to be self-aware, and to make equitable choices daily.

Duke Health Pledge

That is how we create a community that is stronger, healthier, and more just — and that is why we make this pledge:

  • We stand against racism, bias, and hate.
  • We treat all people with respect. We value each other’s differences. We care for each other through kindness and an understanding that life is precious.
  • We recognize our own implicit biases and actively seek, listen, and respond to feedback from others as part of our personal growth and development. When confronted with racism, we always take action to speak out against it.
  • We advocate for high-quality, equitable health care as a human right, and we dedicate ourselves to overcoming the painful separations that divide us.
  • We are guided by science and know that excellent research and health care cannot happen without equity. To deliver the most effective care, we must ensure equitable access to treatments and care, so that every individual can achieve optimal health.
  • We commit to educating ourselves and the next generations of health care, science, and technology professionals to acknowledge, counter, and ultimately eliminate racism and racial inequities.
  • We use our expertise to study the impact of racial injustice on health outcomes. We reduce health disparities by actively engaging members of diverse populations to guide and lead our research. We commit to translating that research into practice, sharing what we learn as we encourage other institutions to do the same.
  • We are committed to standing for values and actions that promote health and healthy communities for all. We partner with our community for the public good, including education, job training, affordable housing, food security, and access to health care.

In sum, racism, hatred, and intolerance have no place at Duke Health. We, therefore, commit to an unwavering collective stance against systemic racism and injustice. We recognize this is a journey and will continue to challenge ourselves to lead change. We make this pledge for the advancement of health, for the good of our communities, and for our patients, their loved ones, our students and trainees, and each other.

Download a PDF of the pledge: Duke Health Stands Against Racism (PDF, 45 KB)