Statement attributable to the Board of Directors of the American Association for Clinical Chemistry:
“Over the past year, the COVID-19 pandemic has tested the limits of the laboratory medicine community’s ingenuity and endurance. However, even as we have faced unprecedented challenges during this outbreak, our Asian and Asian American colleagues have been facing another outbreak: a surge of directed hostility and violence, fueled in part by xenophobic rhetoric around the coronavirus. It shouldn’t have taken a shocking and deadly event to bring these circumstances to the level of attention and concern they have always deserved.
“We are appalled and angered by the horrific acts committed in and around Atlanta on March 16, which took the lives of eight people, including six Asian American women. We extend our deepest condolences to the families of all the shooting victims. We are equally devastated by the ongoing racist attacks targeting the Asian American community that preceded the shooting and that have continued in its wake. We stand in solidarity with the victims of these hate crimes, and with all of AACC’s Asian and Asian American members and staff.
“We should not limit our outrage only to such extreme examples of violence and hate. We are all diminished whenever the inherent dignity and worth of any individual is violated by acts of injustice, inequity, or intolerance on the basis of their race, gender, or ethnicity, in a manner large or small. Sadly, such racism against the Asian American community—and against many communities of color—has been a longstanding issue in our country, and it will take a sustained commitment from all of us to eliminate it.
“To this end, last year AACC adopted an explicit statement of nondiscrimination and anti-harassment, pledging itself to “a safe, productive, and welcoming environment for all who engage in AACC programs and activities ... free from discrimination in any form and for any reason, such as ethnic or national origin, race, religion, citizenship, language, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, physical appearance, age, or socioeconomic status.” This commitment is backed by a code of conduct expected of anyone who engages in any aspect of AACC activity. It was followed, earlier this year, with the formation of a joint member/staff Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force, which will help develop an overarching strategy to strengthen AACC’s processes and organizational culture in this area.
“We also call on the lab medicine community to continue to lead the way in rooting out inequity in access to, and the quality of, healthcare. Now, more than ever, we must strive to create a welcoming environment for both patients and medical professionals that ensures that all individuals have equal access to high quality care and clinical laboratory testing.”
AACC Board of Directors
David G. Grenache, PhD, DABCC (President), Chief Scientific Officer at TriCore Reference Laboratories and a clinical professor of pathology at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Stephen R. Master, MD, PhD, FAACC (President-Elect), Chief, Division of Laboratory Medicine at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Associate Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Carmen L. Wiley, PhD, DABCC, FAACC (Past President), Medical Director of Clinical Labs, Incyte Diagnostics, Spokane, Washington.
Paul J. Jannetto, PhD, DABCC, FAACC (Secretary), Associate Professor of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology and Consultant and Laboratory Director at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.
Steven Kazmierczak, PhD, DABCC, FAACC (Treasurer), Professor of Pathology and Director of Clinical Chemistry and Toxicology at Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Oregon.
Gyorgy Abel, MD, PhD, DABCC, FAACC (ex-officio with vote, President of the AACC Academy), Medical Director, Clinical Chemistry, Molecular Diagnostics, and Immunology, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, Beth Israel Lahey Health, Burlington, Massachusetts, and Instructor in Pathology (part time), Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.
Shannon Haymond, PhD, DABCC, FAACC (Director), Director of Clinical Mass Spectrometry at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago and Associate Professor of Pathology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois.
Mark Marzinke, PhD, DABCC, FAACC (Director), Associate Professor, Departments of Pathology and Medicine, at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland.
Christopher McCudden, PhD, DABCC, FAACC, FCACB (Director), Vice Chair, Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, University of Ottawa; Deputy Chief Medical and Scientific Officer — Eastern Ontario Regional Laboratory Association; Clinical Biochemist, Division of Biochemistry, Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, The Ottawa Hospital; and Associate Professor, Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
Octavia M. Peck Palmer, PhD, FAACC (Director), Associate Professor, Departments of Pathology, Critical Care Medicine, Clinical and Translational Science at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
David B. Sacks, MB ChB, FRCPath (Director), Adjunct Professor of Medicine at Georgetown University, and a Clinical Professor of Pathology at George Washington University, Washington, DC.
Christine Schmotzer, MD (Director), Chief, Division of Clinical Pathology, University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center; Co-Director, University Hospitals Diagnostic Institute; and Associate Professor of Pathology, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio.
David Shiembob, C(ASCP), MBA (ex-officio with vote, Chair of Clinical Laboratory Scientists Council), Senior Healthcare Consultant at ARUP Laboratories, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Mark J. Golden, FASAE, CAE (ex-officio), CEO of AACC, Washington, DC.
Dedicated to achieving better health through laboratory medicine, AACC brings together more than 50,000 clinical laboratory professionals, physicians, research scientists, and business leaders from around the world focused on clinical chemistry, molecular diagnostics, mass spectrometry, translational medicine, lab management, and other areas of progressing laboratory science. Since 1948, AACC has worked to advance the common interests of the field, providing programs that advance scientific collaboration, knowledge, expertise, and innovation. For more information, visit www.aacc.org.