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In The Nation’s Compelling Interest: Ensuring Diversity in the Health-Care Workforce
ness and understanding of diversity in the campus context. A confidential ombudsman program may assist efforts to improve the campus climate for diversity by providing an informal mediation process to gather information about complaints, advise individuals about how to resolve disputes informally, mediate disputes, seek “win–win” resolution of problems, and advise individuals about more formal grievance procedures should informal efforts fail (Steinhardt and Connell, 2002).
Recommendation 5-1: HPEIs should develop and regularly evaluate comprehensive strategies to improve the institutional climate for diversity. These strategies should attend not only to the structural dimensions of diversity, but also to the range of other dimensions (e.g., psychological and behavioral) that affect the success of institutional diversity efforts.
Recommendation 5-2: HPEIs should proactively and regularly engage and train students, house staff, and faculty regarding institutional diversity-related policies and expectations, the principles that underlie these policies, and the importance of diversity to the long-term institutional mission. Faculty should be able to demonstrate specific progress toward achieving institutional diversity goals as part of the promotion and merit process.
Recommendation 5-3: HPEIs should establish an informal, confidential mediation process for students and faculty who experience barriers to institutional diversity goals (e.g., experiences of discrimination, harassment).
Recommendation 5-4: HPEIs should be encouraged to affiliate with community-based health-care facilities in order to attract and train a more diverse and culturally competent workforce and to increase access to health care.
Community Benefit Principles and Diversity
Community benefit is a legal term that applies to charitable activities that benefit the community as a whole. For over 100 years, federal tax law has recognized the significant role of charitable trusts (nonprofits that serve “religious, charitable, scientific, literary, or educational purposes) in furthering governmental and social goals, providing for income tax exemption for qualifying organizations. The framework of charitable trust has been adopted and maintained in every update of the tax code since the original ruling. Historically, this framework has expanded beyond early “relief of poverty” criteria for hospitals to qualify for tax exemption as 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, to more recent IRS rulings that removed the re-