Statement from President Pines

Wellness Is Racial Justice

Dear Medical Board of California Community,

For months, we’ve navigated a most unique set of compounded circumstances, including the COVID-19 pandemic, widespread conscience awakening, and public outcry after the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and countless others who had their lives cut short. The list of challenges we face in our world today is lengthened by the insidious systems of oppression, injustice, and racism that manifest time and time again into illness, poverty, lack of opportunity, and violence. These systems have carried the country through slavery and segregation, forced migration and redlining, the Trail of Tears, the Tulsa Massacre, and today’s school-to-prison pipeline.

This is our America, and I know we can do better.

In this moment, let us reconsider the ways in which we listen and learn. Let us raise our expectations for our benchmarks for excellence in leadership and be more intentional in how we support and uplift one another. Let us recognize that what has been can be better, and that we all have a role to play in building trust and fellowship with our Black and Brown brothers and sisters. Let us focus not just on our words of support and condolence, but also on the actions we can take to advocate, educate, legislate, and vote for justice. Let us identify and relentlessly pursue action items that will embed the foundation necessary for change, from criminal justice reform to health equity.

The Medical Board of California is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. California is the most populated U.S. state, with an estimated population of 39.512 million. It is home to people from a wide variety of ethnic, racial, national, and religious backgrounds. We have an obligation to uphold our mission to protect the health care of our consumers through the proper licensing and regulation of physicians, surgeons, and certain allied healthcare professionals, and to promote access to quality medical care for all. This is where we stand.

As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said over 50 years ago, “We cannot miss the moment and cannot look a broken system in the face and simply call for the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. America was and is a bold experiment. But she will not be okay on her own.”

Let us march on this journey together.

Stay safe and be well,

Denise Pines

Denise Pines

President, Medical Board of California