Diversity and Inclusion
RANZCO recognises that it operates in environments of complexity. Challenges are best overcome and opportunities best leveraged by the involvement of a variety of voices, vantage points, and expertise from people of different geographies, backgrounds and disciplines. To this end, RANZCO is committed to fostering places of work and training where people feel included and valued. The Diversity and Inclusion Committee takes the lead in suggesting initiatives to the Board and Council that further these aims. RANZCO expects all Fellows, Associates, trainees and employees to abide by the Policy on Diversity and Inclusion. One initiative is to increase female representation on RANZCO committees and in leadership roles to better reflect the demographics of the training program and society in general.
Research suggests that organisations that respect and value the diversity brought by both women and men are better able to attract and retain high performers and improve operational performance. The business case for gender equality is strong. Gender equality can help to:
- Attract the best applicants (Trainees and SIMGs)
- Reduce cost of staff turnover
- Enhance organisational performance
- Minimise legal risks
- Enhance reputation
- Engage men
First Female RANZCO President
In 2018, RANZCO elected its first-ever female President A/Prof Heather Mack.
Clinical A/Prof Heather Mack released a video of her final message as Outgoing RANZCO President in October 2020. A/Prof Mack also announced the launched of a new College Scholarship – the Heather G Mack Scholarship for Women. The scholarship will be available for final year trainees and young female Fellows to support governance training and education.
Women in Ophthalmology
Closely linked to the work of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee is the work being done by RANZCO’s Women in Ophthalmology Group. Since being established, the Women in Ophthalmology (WIO) group has undertaken several initiatives to increase female representation on RANZCO committees and in leadership roles, and to help women succeed at all levels of their ophthalmology careers. In recent years, the WIO has established a core Advisory Group to better support female trainees and Fellows, advocating on issues that enable greater gender equality in ophthalmology and medicine more broadly.
During the 50th RANZCO Congress held in Adelaide in 2018, the WIO Advisory Group hosted a lunch to set the strategic direction of the group for the next two years. This was a well-attended event that generated robust discussion and set clear priorities that have been captured in the 2019-2020 Women in Ophthalmology Strategic Plan.
The Women in Ophthalmology encourage all RANZCO Fellows and trainees to connect and support their colleagues and to engage in College activities at all levels. By working together, we are stronger doctors, we are a stronger College, and we are stronger advocates for our patients.
Across Australia and New Zealand, each state now has a WIO Advisory Group representative, they are:
- NZ: Andrea Vincent firstname.lastname@example.org
- QLD: Jayne Camuglia via email@example.com
- VIC/TAS: Anu Mathew firstname.lastname@example.org
- NSW: Stephanie Watson email@example.com
- SA/NT: Aanchal Gupta via firstname.lastname@example.org
- WA: Jane Khan email@example.com
- Trainees: Michelle Tian Sun firstname.lastname@example.org
The picture in numbers:
Are you in need of assistance?
The RANZCO EAP is a free and confidential hotline that can be accessed by all Fellows, trainees, associates and staff. Currently, usage of the hotline is relatively low with less than ten calls being logged per quarter. All calls to the hotline are dealt with confidentially and the EAP can help you with:
- interpersonal conflict and tension
- work related stress;
- change in your work environment;
- harassment and grievances;
- relationship and family matters;
- personal and emotional stress;
- grief and bereavement;
- career issues;
- mental health concerns; and
- personal crisis or trauma.
For more information on your EAP, please see Mental Health Matters.
For information on the initiatives RANZCO has undertaken to eliminate discrimination, harassment and bullying, please see the Discrimination, Harassment and Bullying Policy and the Update on the Elimination of Discrimination, Harassment and Bullying.
Last updated: October 12, 2020