HBHL aims to facilitate a world-leading neuroscience research and training environment at McGill. Equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) is essential to ensuring excellence and we aim to build a community where all are able to achieve their potential for success. We will build on existing institutional strengths and take action in areas requiring improvement in order to foster inclusion for all, and encourage advocacy and action throughout the university. We will leverage the opportunity provided by our funders to act as a leader in EDI, raising the standard and facilitating change at the institutional level, building on McGill's EDI plan with a particular focus in the neuroscience domain.
February 2020 Climate Survey: Findings
In February 2020, an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Survey was sent to HBHL participants to assess climate and identify barriers to inclusive, accessible and harassment-free environments. The survey results have helped to inform HBHL's approach to several standout issues, outlined below.
Experiences of Harassment and Discrimination
- 11% of respondents who do not identify in any equity group reported experiencing harassment within the McGill environment, and <10% reported experiencing discrimination
- 30% of individuals who identify as a woman and 16% of individuals who identify as a racialized person or member of visible minority reporting experiencing harassment
- 33% of individuals who identify as a person of minority sexual orientation or gender identity (LGBTQI2S+), 25% of individuals who identify as a woman, and 19% of individuals who identify as a racialized person or member of visible minority reported experiencing discrimination
To address this, HBHL has implemented an Event Code of Conduct to which all participants of HBHL activities must agree to follow. HBHL is working on online resources, including EDI best practices in supervision and event organization, to help encourage more inclusive environments throughout the McGill neuroscience community. An “excellence levels” selection process will be implemented for all future funding programs with more than 10 applications are received. This process prioritizes application quality, and allows for the selection of candidates from underrepresented groups in cases where merit is equal and not all candidates at a particular merit level can be awarded.
Role Models at McGill
- 88% of respondents who do not identify in any equity group reported having positive role models at McGill
- 77% of respondents who identify as a racialized person or member of a visible minority, 75% of respondents who identify as a woman, and 64% of respondents who identify as a person of minority sexual orientation or gender identity (LGBTQI2S+) reported having positive role models at McGill
To address this, HBHL requires the faculty hiring new recruits through the New Recruit Start-Up Supplements program to assign a mentor for all HBHL new recruits and describe the mentorship plan in the application for start-up funds. HBHL developed and implemented the first edition of the HBHL Mentorship Program for postdocs in 2019-2020 and offers a variety of public networking events for faculty, staff and trainees to connect.
Focus on EDI
- 27% of respondents who do not identify in any equity group agreed with the statement “HBHL puts too much focus on equity, diversity and inclusion”
- <10% of individuals who identify as a woman, a racialized person or a member of visible minority and/or minority sexual orientation or gender identity (LGBTQI2S+) agreed with this statement
This raises the need for increased awareness of the importance of EDI initiatives and the experiences of individuals from marginalized groups. HBHL has and will continue to pursue this through the development of EDI training events and integration of EDI content throughout our training program and research events.
- Develop a targeted action plan to increase access and inclusion for First Nations, Inuit and Métis individuals to the HBHL community, and integrating Indigenous knowledge into HBHL’s research. We will research best practices and review strategies implemented in other McGill units and other universities, and consult with Indigenous communities.
- Develop a targeted action plan to address anti-Black racism. We will research best practices and review strategies implemented in other McGill units and other universities, and consult with Black faculty, staff and trainees to determine the ways in which anti-Black racism is present specifically in the McGill neuroscience community.
- Create a series of public online EDI resources with a focus on the McGill neuroscience community, such as guidelines for supervisors to facilitate inclusive training environments as well as guidelines for accessible academic activities.
- Host at least one EDI training event open to all members of the McGill neuroscience community to facilitate discussion and collaborative learning.
- Identify innovative methods, beyond resources and training events, to address systemic issues and reach an audience that may not be as significantly impacted by training sessions.
- Monitor how the Covid crisis evolves and reflect on how this may deepen existing inequities, and take action/adjust plans accordingly to facilitate comfortable and productive environments for all during this time.
To file a complaint or report, inquire about McGill policies and processes, or be connected to additional supports, visit McGill's website for Reporting Harassment, Discrimination, and Sexual Violence.
For questions regarding HBHL's EDI initiatives, ideas for future actions or collaboration opportunities, please feel free to contact krystle.vanhoof [at] mcgill.ca (Krystle van Hoof) (HBHL Managing Director & CEO) or andrzej.tereszkowski [at] mcgill.ca (Andrzej Tereszkowski)hbhl [at] mcgill.ca ( )(HBHL Training and Equity Advisor). Any communications including identifying information or situations will be kept confidential, and no identifying information will be shared without your written permission.