Special Committee for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Chair: Rachel Herron, PT, DPT (she/her/hers)
Additional Members:
  • Robert Cheng (he/him), PT, DPT, OCS, COMT
  • Matt Currier (he/him), PT, DPT
  • Marissa Garvin (she/her), PT, DPT
  • Rachel Jarvie (she/her), PT, DPT, Chair of King County Student Outreach Committee, Vice Chair of King County District Committee
  • Kenny Li (he/him), SPT
  • Shawn M Rundell (she/her), PT, DPT, PCS
  • Lesley Weinberg (she/her), PT, DPT, GCS, APTA WA Enhancement Director
 

WHO WE ARE

Our Mission
The APTA Washington (WA) Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Special Committee aims to foster a diverse network of physical therapy professionals, who passionately collaborate to dismantle systemic injustices, address health disparities, and support the needs of minority physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, students, patients, and community members. 

This DEI Special Committee was established in June 2020 to accomplish the following goals:
  • Improve cultural responsiveness of Washington PTs, PTAs, and students.
  • Improve the physical therapy profession’s engagement with minority and underserved communities.
  • Improve the involvement of underrepresented minorities at all levels of the profession.

WHO WE SERVE

We strive to serve minority physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, students, patients, and community members. Our committee aligns with the following minority statuses established by The American Council of Academic Physical Therapy:
  • Racial, ethnic and cultural minorities
  • Sexual orientation and gender identity minorities
  • Nationality and immigrant status minorities
  • Individuals living with disabilities

OUR PROGRESS

Transparency is important. Our Committee is in its first year of development! Thus far we have established a Committee Chair, created a mission statement, and collaborated to write our 12 month objectives. We have met once with the APTA WA Board of Directors, and monthly with our committee members, since June 2020. Below are the specific objectives we will accomplish by August 2021 to help us reach our goals.

Establish a social media presence to:
  • Raise awareness about the intersections between social justice issues, health inequities and physical therapy.
  • Provide networking opportunities for Washington State minority physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, students and allies.
Create and share a resource list of books, articles, podcasts, documentaries etc...that individuals can use to:
  • Facilitate access to DEI materials and empower all community members to improve their cultural responsiveness.
  • Create educational opportunities for the PT community on determinants of health/health injustices and how to combat them.
Engage with at least one Washington state middle school or high school to:
  • Raise community awareness about the physical therapy profession.
  • Inspire and empower minority students to pursue the physical therapy profession.
Host a booth at the 2021 APTA WA Annual Conference to:
  • Raise awareness about the intersections between social justice issues, health inequities and physical therapy.
  • Grow our DEI Committee.
  • Share resources to address DEI within the physical therapy profession.

HOW TO GET INVOLVED

We are humbly doing our best to accomplish our mission for the betterment of our community. Our Committee highly values the input of our Washington State PTs, PTAs, students and community members. We also enjoy collaborating with folks from other states, who are actively engaging in DEI efforts. 

Please contact us via email with any questions, suggestions, or concerns.

RESOURCES

Interested in some recent DEI discussions at the national level of our profession? Click on the following links to access the recorded APTA live DEI Panel Discussions:

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

We would like to thank the Cultural Minority Affairs committee, of the APTA Oregon Chapter, for their assistance in the development of our committee!