Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists Bulletin Spring 2021 - 6

PCSO News and Events

President's Report

President's Message
Dear Friends,

Dr. Marie Lathrop
PCSO President 2020-2021

Spring is here, and most of us have received our
vaccines and we are looking forward to putting
the hardships of last year behind us. I, personally,
am so excited to move past virtual meetings and
taking temperatures. I am grateful, however, for
all the time I have had with my family and for
new insights that have been the result of months
of reflection.
One of the things that I became aware of was the
need to improve my understanding of Diversity,
Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). I took for granted that
this was incorporated into the fabric of most of
our workplaces and associations, but I did not
really understand what it stood for or what it
meant. If I ever saw DEI on an email, it was usually
because I was late completing my annual training
module. However, many tough conversations
over the summer made me rethink the necessity
of DEI in all aspects of our society, especially our
professional organizations.
I learned that Diversity is really about representation. In the dictionary, it is defined as " variety "
or " the presence of a difference. " In the context
of individuals, it means that each of us can bring
a unique perspective based on our social backgrounds, identities, and experiences. Individuals
themselves are not diverse; rather, diversity
needs to be used to describe a group of people
who can be different from each other. It is also
vital that these " different " voices are heard,
valued, and represented in the decision-making
process.
Equity is about eliminating barriers. It seems fair
to treat everyone equally, but because inequities
exist, not everyone has the same tools to succeed.
Equity is the means to level the playing field,

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to make sure that everyone, regardless of their
backgrounds, has the same opportunities for
success. Equity aims to identify and eliminate obstacles that prevent the full participation of some
groups. Ultimately, equality can be achieved only
by embracing equity.
Inclusion is about belonging. It refers to how
people with different identities feel as part of the
larger group. It moves us from theory to practice.
Inclusion does not naturally result from diversity;
it is the act of intentionally creating a place that
allows people to feel valued and fosters a sense of
belonging.
Keeping these definitions in mind when working toward DEI is important, but seeing them
through the lens of engagement and justice for
our organization will ultimately lead to change.
When we reviewed the PCSO mission statement
and core values last year, we realized that we had
not incorporated these principals directly into our
documents. Although we have always endeavored to hear our members and remove roadblocks
to engagement, we had no statement or policy
to that effect. We are now in the process of doing
just that; we are also looking at how structures
and policies can create advantages and disadvantages for our members and addressing them. Our
board is excited to incorporate DEI into our written documents and into our everyday practices,
because ultimately PCSO will gain the strength
that our diversity offers when we remove barriers
and engage our entire membership. This is an
ongoing process that requires individual and collective reflection and accountability, but I know
we can do it.
Stay well, my friends! I am looking forward to
seeing you in person in Portland this fall.

PCSO Bulletin    Spring 2021



Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists Bulletin Spring 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pacific Coast Society of Orthodontists Bulletin Spring 2021

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