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  • WebMD Parent Co Threatens Employees in RTO Video, Ohio House of Reps Override Veto of Bill Banning Gender-Affirming Care, & Racial Inequity in Stroke Rates Worsens for Black Americans

WebMD Parent Co Threatens Employees in RTO Video, Ohio House of Reps Override Veto of Bill Banning Gender-Affirming Care, & Racial Inequity in Stroke Rates Worsens for Black Americans

DEI in 5: Biweekly DEI News

🙏🏾🕊️ Dr. Antoinette 'Bonnie' Candia-Bailey

A photo of Dr. Bailey, a Black woman, with a bright, welcoming smile. She has a shaved head, glowing skin, and is wearing large hoop earrings. She's dressed in what appears to be a luxurious white faux fur coat with a black top visible underneath. The background is light and blurred, drawing focus to her. Her confident pose and joyful expression convey a sense of warmth and charisma.

Dr. Antoinette 'Bonnie' Candia-Bailey

Today’s edition of DEI in 5 is dedicated to Dr. Antoinette 'Bonnie' Candia-Bailey and her loved ones. As reported by HBCU Buzz, on Monday, January 8th, 2023, “Dr. Bailey died by suicide due to distress from “bullying and severe mistreatment” in her role as VP of Student Affairs at Lincoln University Missouri.”

I have so much that I want to say about this, but I’m exhausted. For now, I’ll just stay rest well Dr. Bailey 🕊️. Sending your loved ones love and light 🙏🏾.

Black women, take care of yourselves 🖤.

ICYMI: Watch the 50th Episode of DEI in 5 👇🏾

It’s the 50th episode of the ‘DEI in 5’ YouTube series I was joined by two of my fave DEI pals: Caren Young and Clarissa Fuselier. We shared our thoughts on the current state of DEI, talked about the need for DEI practitioners to have community (and not just spaces to gather—which Clarissa reminded is not the same as community), and also the need for more thoughtful and intentional job postings for DEI roles (really all roles, tbh).

Today’s DEI News👇🏾

  • ‘Don’t Mess With Us’: WebMD Parent Company Demands Return to Office in Bizarre Video

  • Ohio House of Representatives overrides veto of bill banning gender-affirming care

  • Overall rates of stroke decreasing, but racial inequity worsens for Black Americans, new study finds

  • Employee Mental Health Benefits Are Rapidly Evolving. Here Are 3 Trends to Know About in 2024

    Read time: 5 minutes

MGMT PlaybookPractical management insights straight to your inbox every Wednesday.

Today’s Top 3 👇🏾

Summary: Internet Brands, the parent company of WebMD, issued a direct and uncompromising return-to-office (RTO) mandate via an internal (now public) video. The CEO, Bob Brisco, unequivocally informed employees that remote work is no longer acceptable and that everyone is expected back in the office. The video featured mocking depictions of remote workers and a warning that the company is serious about enforcing the new policy.

The Details:

  • Mandate Without Negotiation: The CEO's message in the video is clear: the company is not seeking agreement but demanding action from remote workers.

  • Critique of Remote Work: The video portrays remote workers negatively, with satirical imagery and messaging that trivializes their work mode.

  • Company's Response to Backlash: After receiving criticism, Internet Brands acknowledged the negative reception and mentioned an ongoing hybrid policy, with a light-hearted dismissal of the video's tone.

  • Executives' Involvement: Other high-level executives, including WebMD's CFO, reinforced the RTO demand, stating the need for immediate compliance.

Why is this relevant: This situation highlights the growing tension between employees' desire for flexibility and management's push for traditional office work settings. The use of satire and the stark message in the video reflect the challenges companies face in implementing RTO policies. The reception and employee reactions suggest that not only the policy but also the approach to communication will be critical in shaping the future workplace dynamics and culture.

Stickers in the shape of a heart with a trans flag are pictured during a conversation about trans care, equity and access, during National Trans Visibility Month with the Rainbow Room, a program of Planned Parenthood Keystone, in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, U.S., March 29, 2023.

REUTERS/Hannah Beier/File Photo

Summary: The legislative conflict over transgender rights intensifies as the Ohio House of Representatives overrides Governor Mike DeWine's veto of a bill banning gender-affirming healthcare for minors. This action is part of a nationwide surge in proposed legislation targeting transgender individuals.

The Details:

  • Rapid Increase in Legislation: Almost 150 bills aimed at restricting transgender rights have been presented in U.S. state legislatures in the 2023-24 sessions, a significant increase from the previous year.

  • Expanding Medical Restrictions: New legislative efforts are expanding age restrictions, with proposals like a South Carolina bill aiming to withhold Medicaid coverage for transgender individuals up to age 26.

  • Record Number of Bills: The current trend follows a year where over 560 anti-LGBTQ rights bills were introduced, with 81 passing, including 22 that limited or banned gender-affirming care for minors.

  • Court Rulings: Federal courts have issued mixed decisions on these healthcare bans, indicating an ongoing legal battle.

Why is this relevant: This legislative movement marks a pivotal moment in the broader national discourse on transgender rights and healthcare access. The increasing number of restrictive bills and the inclusion of adults in proposed bans suggest a deepening divide in how gender identity is understood and legislated in the United States. With federal courts split on the issue, the legal landscape remains uncertain, highlighting the importance of ongoing advocacy and public policy debate in shaping the rights and healthcare options available to transgender individuals.

The image shows a close-up of two hands clasped together. On one side is a doctor's hand, partially visible from the wrist down, clad in a white coat with a stethoscope hanging in the background. The hand is reaching out and gently holding the hand of a Black woman, whose wrist is adorned with a delicate silver bracelet, suggesting her gender. The focus is on the hands, emphasizing a personal and caring interaction against a neutral backdrop.

Summary: A new study published in Neurology reveals that while overall stroke rates in adults have decreased, racial disparities have intensified, particularly affecting Black Americans who experience strokes at a younger age and with greater frequency compared to white adults.

The Details:

  • Decreased Stroke Ages: The average age for first strokes in Black adults dropped from 66 to 62 years, while for white adults it slightly decreased from 72 to 71 years.

  • Increased Likelihood in Black Adults: Black individuals were found to be 52 to 83% more likely to have a first-time stroke than white individuals, a gap that has not improved over time.

  • Young Adult Impact: Young Black adults aged 20 to 44 are particularly affected by higher stroke rates.

  • Health Conditions: Conditions that elevate stroke risk, like diabetes and high blood pressure, have become more prevalent in both Black and white populations, but more so in Black individuals.

  • Cost of Strokes: Strokes have significant financial implications, with costs nearing $56.5 billion for U.S. healthcare between 2018-2019.

Why is this relevant: The persisting racial inequities in stroke incidence emphasize the role of structural racism in healthcare access and outcomes. This gap underlines systemic issues that lead to stress, inflammation, and health conditions contributing to strokes. Addressing these disparities requires more than just raising awareness; it necessitates active interventions targeting the social determinants of health that disproportionately affect Black communities. Understanding and mitigating these inequities is essential for fostering a healthcare system that provides equitable care and prevention for all, particularly for stroke, a major cause of disability and death.

A few other developments…👇🏾

Until later,

This newsletter is co-curated by Nico Escobar. Need virtual coordination? Social media management? Content creation? Reach out to her!

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