A Diversity Message from Neil Meltzer, President and CEO, and Dr. Sybil Pentsil, Chief Diversity Officer – July 2024


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Thank you to all our team members for everything you do every day on all our campuses to make LifeBridge Health a safe and welcoming place for all. We are a diverse team that celebrates our individual uniqueness while working collaboratively to care for patients, the community and each other. Below, we've outlined some of this month's observances and how you can continue supporting our communities.


Disability Pride Month
Disability Pride Month is celebrated every July and is an opportunity to honor the history, achievements, experiences and struggles of the disability community. This celebration occurs every July to mark the ADA’s anniversary, which was passed on July 26, 1990. With up to one in four U.S. adults having a disability, it benefits us all to foster greater awareness, inclusion and respect within LifeBridge Health and beyond.


National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month
The month of July is a time to bring awareness to the unique challenges that racial and ethnic minorities in the United States face when it comes to mental illness. In 2020, fewer than one in every two African American adults got care for mental health. This month is dedicated to addressing mental health disparities in minority communities and promoting mental health awareness and resources. 


Independence Day (7/04)
July 4 is Independence Day, commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. The declaration asserted the separation of the United States from Great Britain and outlined several fundamental rights for its citizens, such as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Efforts continue to be made towards the realization of these ideals for people of all races, religions, gender expressions and identities and sexual orientations.


Philippine Republic Day (7/04)
In the Philippines, July 4 is celebrated as Philippine Republic Day, also known as Philippine-American Friendship Day. This occasion commemorates the 1946 Treaty of Manila’s signing, which recognized the Philippine Republic and relinquished U.S. sovereignty over the Philippines. To learn about our Pan-Asian and other Employee Resource Groups, click here.


Helen Keller Day (6/27)
Observed on June 27, Helen Keller Day commemorates the life and achievements of its namesake. Born in 1880, Keller lost both her hearing and sight due to illness as a child. Keller would eventually learn how to both read and write, becoming in adulthood a prolific author and disability rights activist. She was the first deafblind person in American history to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. In addition to celebrating Keller’s legacy, Helen Keller Day draws attention to advocacy efforts for blind and deaf people.


Martyrdom of the Bab (7/09)
Martyrdom of the Bab, observed on July 9 by the followers of the Baha’i Faith, is a commemoration of the martyrdom of one of the founders of the Bahai religion, which began in Iran in the year 1844. On this day, the Baha’is recount the execution of the Bab, believing that his revolutionary new teachings set in motion a fresh cycle of progressive revelation to humanity and that his ultimate sacrifice provided a new vision of a unified world.


Ashura (7/16-17)
For Sunni Muslims, Ashura commemorates the day that God delivered the Israelites, led by the Prophet Musa (Moses), from the tyranny of Egypt’s Pharaoh by parting the Red Sea, thus allowing them to cross safely. The day is observed with fasting and special prayers in mosques, signifying its sacred nature. Ashura is a day of commemoration in Islam. It occurs annually on the tenth of Muharram (July 16-17), the first month of the Islamic calendar.


Hijri New Year
The Islamic New Year, also called the Hijri New Year, is the day that marks the beginning of a new lunar Hijri year and is the day on which the year count is incremented. The first day of the Islamic year is observed by most Muslims on the first day of the month of Muharram.


Americans with Disabilities Act Anniversary (7/26)
On July 26, 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed to provide legal protection for the rights of people with disabilities in the United States. On its anniversary, we recognize the importance of this act and the protections it ensures, while acknowledging the advancements that still need to be made for people with disabilities.


Calls to Action

REFLECT: Have I checked in with my team and colleagues to see how they are doing lately?

RECOGNIZE: World events, personal loss, and other challenges can’t always be left at the workplace door.

RESPOND: I will make a commitment to check on my colleagues and team, offering empathy and compassion, even when their struggles are different from mine.