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DEIA: What I learned from the AAFS Diversity Outreach Committee

Event Dates
Event Duration
1 Hour

This webinar introduces contemporary definitions and applications of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA), which differ from past interpretations. Modern applications will be explained through three contexts: employment, casework, and professional organizations. One such professional organization, the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS), has a committee dedicated to highlighting and improving DEIA. The AAFS Diversity Outreach Committee (DOC) has initiated important conversations and discussions, providing forensic science service providers with valuable insights to re-examine their resources and use them effectively. The level of support DEIA receives in an organization significantly impacts the success and sustainability of those initiatives. Support is not merely “permission to explore”; support involves commitment, patience, and a (re)connection with human resources in the workplace. As conversations unfold, there is a need to confront the idea of change—how receptive are individuals to change, and how much are they willing to let go of the status quo? Technological advances or improvements, such as a paperless laboratory information or records management systems, are seen as a lengthy and careful process, so why do the expectations differ for DEIA initiatives, demanding a quick return on investment? There are many pathways to new and exciting platforms or applications in a laboratory just as there are many pathways to DEIA in the same space. These pathways can be scaled down or up as time and support continues or as experience with them grows. Forensic science service providers can work well within their bounds and capabilities to make a difference. This webinar will provide examples of how an organization might engage with its employees or members, engage with the field, and solve problems for communities. This webinar is ideal for individuals who are new in the DEIA space, those who are curious about DEIA in the workplace, and those seeking alternative ideas and applications of DEIA in professional settings and in fieldwork. 

Detailed Learning Objectives

  1. Attendees will be able to define and describe key words and concepts related to DEIA. 
  2. Attendees will understand and identify potential DEIA opportunities in the workplace.
  3. Attendees will understand how to engage with DEIA in the workplace and in the community.

Date Created: March 1, 2024