Revised January 2018



LOFT addresses diversity and equity in all facets of the organization.   This policy outlines LOFT’s commitments and actions related to diversity.


Health Equity

Within the health system, equity means reducing systemic barriers to equitable access to high quality health care for all; addressing the specific health needs of people along the social gradient, including the most health disadvantaged populations; and ensuring that the ways in which health services are provided and organized contributes to reducing overall health disparities.

Health inequities or disparities are differences in health outcomes that are avoidable, unfair and systematically related to social inequality and marginalization.  Health equity works to reduce or eliminate socially structured health inequalities and differential health outcomes.

(Health Equity Impact Assessment workbook, LHINs)


The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect. It means understanding that each individual is unique, and recognizing our individual differences. These can be along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs, or other ideologies. It is the exploration of these differences in a safe, positive and nurturing environment. It is about understanding each other and moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing and celebrating the rich dimensions of diversity contained within each individual

(University of Oregon, 1999)


LOFT’s Commitment to Staff

LOFT is an equal opportunity employer. The organization makes every effort to employ diverse individuals who are reflective of the population it serves. Hiring and personnel practices do not discriminate with regard to race, colour, religion, disability, gender, sexual orientation, age, national origin or any other specific area specified under the Ontario Human Rights Code.

LOFT policies, procedures and programs reflect a respect for the values and diversity of all people. All programs are developed acknowledging the diversity of the persons served.

LOFT’s Commitment to Clients

LOFT services will be designed and delivered in a manner that is sensitive and relevant to the diversity of the persons served. Assessment of a client’s needs include addressing all factors that relate to the context in which the person lives, and is based on the strengths, needs and preferences of the individual. All of these unique characteristics are taken into consideration.

Sensitivity to the diversity of the persons served in the programs will be reflected in all services.


Client Responsibilities to Staff and Peers

Clients are asked to engage all people with respect for their uniqueness and dignity, and treat all people with fairness and courtesy. Clients are asked to be sensitive to diversity and avoid discriminating on the grounds of colour, creed, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, physical or mental disability, social class, religion or political belief.


Organizational  commitment

LOFT has an Equity and Diversity workplan and completes a Health Equity Impact Assessment annually.  LOFT reviews data, the workplan and the impact assessment annually to enhance the overall evidence base for equity-based interventions that can be fed back into the planning, policy or program development process.