June 28, 2021

Creating an Environment that Embraces Diversity, Inclusion and Equity

Programs and partnerships focus on community, diverse hiring


One year ago, in June 2020, Cleveland Clinic declared racism a public health crisis in our community.


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Since then, the health system has worked to reaffirm its commitment to diversity and inclusion with new and intentional work designed to address and eliminate racial disparities and cultivate a culture that embraces diversity, inclusion, and equity.

Under the leadership of Cleveland Clinic’s Caregiver Office, our organization is focused on inspiring and creating sustainable change. Our Executive Inclusion and Racial Equity Council promotes policies to build a culture of diversity, equity and inclusion that is free from the racism, bias, and health disparities that adversely impact patients, caregivers, and communities. Additionally, we’ve been working to develop programs, partnerships and hiring practices that are dedicated to helping our communities thrive.

Community-based programs and partnerships

As an anchor institution in the community, we believe transparency is key and aim to lead by example. Recently, we made a commitment to the City of Cleveland to hire 15 percent of our workforce from among city residents. That commitment also includes retaining and building meaningful career paths for these caregivers.

We also partner with OneTen, a coalition of top U.S. employers who are committed to training, hiring, and promoting one million Black Americans into family-sustaining jobs in the next 10 years, with opportunities for advancement. We work with OneTen to improve workplace inclusivity practices, connect talent providers to partner employers, evaluate job requirements and offer meaningful wages. Through our efforts, we aim to reduce barriers to obtaining meaningful careers, ensure equitable career paths for all, and more.


In addition, there are several ways we prioritize the health and well-being of our community members:

  • Being responsive to local needs.
  • Creating measurable improvements to well-being.
  • Providing lifelong engagement through education, employment and healing.

Recent efforts that illustrate Cleveland Clinic’s pledge, include expanding a mobile, full-service pediatric school-based healthcare program, providing high-speed internet to surrounding neighborhoods, expanding the ASPIRE Nurses Scholars program, investing in the JobsOhio initiative, and connecting patients with health and social organizations across Northeast Ohio to reduce barriers to care through the Unite Us program. Additionally, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Cleveland Clinic brought tests, food and supplies to our neighbors. We also provided community testing, home monitoring and community-based vaccine clinics.

Enhancing hiring practices

Our talent acquisition department is focused on hiring, training, and advancing a more diverse workforce. For example, our new executive director of talent acquisition, who was hired earlier this year, is focused on leading the operational aspects of Cleveland Clinic’s recruiting function to achieve the business needs of our health system and create a clear and engaging candidate experience to attract the best caregivers.

We also recently created a new director of talent acquisition workforce diversity position, which includes a primary responsibility to advance Cleveland Clinic’s goals to attract, recruit and retain diverse caregivers in the communities we serve. Creating an environment where diverse talent is welcomed, valued, and nurtured creates the kind of workplace that everyone wants to be part of.


As part of our enhanced hiring strategy, we also have dedicated recruiters and coaches working in neighborhoods, such as at the Langston Hughes Community Health and Education Center, to help remove challenges related to job applications and interviewing.

Valuing inclusion

At Cleveland Clinic, we believe inclusion has the power to changes lives today and for future generations of caregivers, patients, and communities. Inclusion is one of our organization’s six core values, along with quality and safety, teamwork, innovation, integrity, and empathy. Health systems that are committed to diversity, inclusion and equity are likely to be stronger organizations with increasing opportunities to build trust among their workforce and with patients.

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