In June 2017, Ontario passed the Anti-Racism Act, to address systemic racism in the province. This legislation “Enables the government to implement race data collection and an anti-racism impact assessment tool, to help identify, remedy or prevent inequitable racial impacts of policies and programs.” As such, race-based data will eventually inform population health assessments and possibly the collection of data by public health. The presenters will describe systemic racism as an ecological form of discrimination that affects the health of racialized persons, the implications of this new legislation for public health practice, and provide examples of innovative approaches public health organizations are using to address racial inequities. This presentation is a follow-up to a presentation in 2017, entitled “Is Black Health a public health issue?” which provided evidence of systemic anti-Black racism in Canada, and reviewed racism as a social determinant of health.
By the end of this session, participants will be able to:
– Discuss systemic racism as an ecological form of discrimination, with potentially adverse health consequences for racialized persons
– Describe the focus and direction of the Anti-Racism Directorate
– Discuss how the collection of race-based data will inform and improve public health practice
– Explore different approaches used by public health organizations to address systemic racism
About the presenters: Dr. Onye Nnorom & Akilah Haneef-Jabari
Dr. Onye Nnorom is a Public Health & Preventive Medicine specialist. She is the Associate Program Director of the Public Health & Preventive Medicine Residency Program at the University of Toronto and the Black Health Theme Lead of the MD Program at University of Toronto. She also practices family medicine at TAIBU Community Health Centre, which has a mandate to serve the Black community in the GTA. She is particularly interested in Black and immigrant health, and the impact of race as a driver of health inequities in Canada.
Akilah Haneef-Jabari is a Senior Public Engagement and Education Advisor with the Anti-Racism Directorate. She is a Clinical Social Worker who focuses on racial trauma and the impact of systemic racism on personal wellness in education, child welfare, and justice. Akilah is very interested in the often invisible ways in which society is organized in accordance with racism and the impact that has on the environmental and subsequent wellness of Black, Indigenous, and Racialized people.