ASM Responds to NIH Request for Information on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

April 9, 2021

ASM provided comments to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) request for information (RFI) on advancing and strengthening racial equity, diversity and inclusion in the biomedical research workforce.   
 
ASM exemplifies inclusive diversity with equity, access and accountability (IDEAA) in the microbial sciences. In practice, ASM works to create a diverse community and a culture of inclusion where all staff, volunteers, members and the community are respected, treated fairly and provided opportunities to develop professionally and excel in their chosen career pathway.  ASM is committed to supporting and expanding our scientific community as we advance the microbial sciences. As a demonstration of this commitment, ASM recently commissioned an external review of the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) within its programs. Many of the findings of the DEI Taskforce report address the recommendations to evolve programs that are reported in ASM’s comments to the NIH. 
 
ASM is committed to driving change in the microbial sciences, and we understand that addressing issues of equity, inclusion and diversity requires immediate action and will be an ongoing work in progress. ASM believes that a complete culture shift is required so that all aspects of microbiology and related sciences incorporate considerations for inclusive diversity with equity, access and accountability (IDEAA).

ASM recommended 2 approaches for the NIH to consider:
  1. Incorporate IDEAA in all aspects of the scientific process and enterprise.
  2. Provide resources, support and guidance as STEM demolishes obstacles and barriers to replace models that perpetuate exclusion and inequity with ones of collaboration, diversity, inclusivity, accessibility and equity.
     
For both of these recommendations, ASM offers a full and committed partnership to NIH.