“The events on May 25, 2020 with George Floyd are now part of our Black History. The event forced the world to look and address their own behaviour and contribution to the oppression and suppression of black people. Every organization adjusted their own practices to ensure inclusivity and diversity were included as a foundation to their values.”
Claudine McDonald has been at Markham Stouffville Hospital (MSH) for over 21 years, currently as a unit secretary for the Emergency Department. Claudine loves working at MSH because she is proud to live in, work in and provide service to the Markham community. For Claudine, working at MSH rarely feels like work, but more like an enjoyable moment with friends striving for a common goal of providing exceptional health care.
There is no stronger admirable trait than to lead by example and to treat others with the same respect we expect for ourselves. Once you embrace the value of respect for yourself and others, the other values are easily attainable.
When reflecting on the core values of the hospital, Claudine feels that the value of Respect resonates the most with her: “I believe it is the gateway and foundation to all the other values. It is fundamentally important and necessary to recognize the diversity of our community and organization. There is no stronger admirable trait than to lead by example and to treat others with the same respect we expect for ourselves. Once you embrace the value of respect for yourself and others, the other values are easily attainable.”
Claudine is also a co-chair for MSH’s Communities of Inclusion (COI) group, The Alliance of the Black Community (ABC), which was born out of the hospital’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) plan. The COI’s mission is to do the ground-level work that informs decision-making for the hospital to ensure a fair an equitable environment to work and receive care at. As February is Black History Month, Claudine had this to say: “The month of February reminds us to acknowledge and celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of all black people. It reminds us that black people are embedded in the foundation and framework of our history, and that they have not only made gains, but also sacrifices to all that we have grown to love to this day. The reality is, success of our future is the result of all who have come before us regardless of the colour of their skin. Ignorance is not an option; to do so is to admit failure.”
Claudine is a mother of five children and is currently pursuing a degree in Human Resources Management through Athabasca University. This doesn’t leave her with much spare time, but with the time she does get, she enjoys spending it with her children, listening to music, dancing, cooking and watching movies.