An open letter from Boston Scientific leadership on standing up to intolerance and racism
This open letter was shared with Boston Scientific U.S. employees.
On May 25, George Floyd, a black man, died in Minneapolis after being handcuffed and pinned to the ground by the knee of a white law enforcement official. George Floyd was being restrained by the police on suspicion of a non-violent crime. His cries for help, bystander pleas for mercy and the terrible manner of his death were all recorded on video.
George Floyd’s death reflects deeply ingrained, long-standing divisions in our society. And it comes at a time when the pandemic has given rise to hate and xenophobia around the world, with rampant acts of violence across the nation, and the spread of misinformation, racial stereotyping and fear. Sadly, George Floyd is one of many who have recently died because of injustice.
As an executive committee, we feel compelled to condemn injustice and discrimination and to reaffirm our commitment to live by our values and cultivate a workplace that makes equality, diversity and openness priorities—a workplace that sets an example for the greater community. These deaths are yet another reminder that we must continue to listen and learn from one another in safe and inclusive environments—and with respect for different perspectives and backgrounds.
Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” As individuals and as an organization, we must stand up against acts of intolerance and racism—as well as behaviors that promote divisiveness. In line with our values at Boston Scientific, we will not accept hate, racism or intolerance of any kind.
The tragedy in Minneapolis hit particularly close to home for the nearly 9,000 members of the Boston Scientific team who live and work there. The letter below is signed by our leadership team and carries a universal message: We can only heal and grow better together by listening and learning, by having courageous conversations, and by cultivating a trusting environment where all people feel safe, comfortable and empowered to voice their ideas, thoughts and concerns. When we behave this way, we can set an example for all of our communities around the world. We need to do better—and we can.
Chairman and CEO, Boston Scientific
Message from the Executive Committee
The tragic and unnecessary death of George Floyd has devastated our community, causing anger, disbelief and fear. Minneapolis is not just where we work. It is a place many of us call home and where many of us raise families. We grieve what has happened in our city and the division it has wrought.
George Floyd’s death calls for us to condemn injustice and discrimination and to reaffirm our commitment to live by our values and cultivate a workplace that makes equality, diversity, and openness priorities—a workplace that sets an example for the greater community. His death is yet another reminder that we must continue to listen and learn from one another in safe and inclusive environments—and with respect for different perspectives and backgrounds.
In the coming weeks, our leadership team will be expanding the real-talk conversations we’ve been having with employee resource groups around the world. We hope these forums will provide an opportunity for you to share your concerns and feelings about what happened. In the meantime, please keep the following in mind:
Speak up when you experience or witness intolerance, mistreatment or bias in action. No matter what the issue, say something. If you don’t know what to say, start by asking, “What did you mean by that?” Listen, then respond calmly based on facts. Saying nothing when such instances arise condones the discrimination or microaggression.
Create an inclusive environment for everyone. Seek different perspectives, and respect points of view and communication styles that are different from your own.
Process your feelings. Tragedies like this can feel traumatizing, especially for members of marginalized groups. Talking to friends and loved ones can help. Boston Scientific also makes mental health resources available for times when you may need more support through a dedicated employee well-being website and other places.
We are in the business of advancing science for life—for people of every background, color and creed. It’s critical that we continue to talk about discrimination and injustice because dialogue—and action—is the path to a better future. Thank you for commitment to Boston Scientific and to making our global workplace an environment where everyone feels safe, valued and included.
Mike Mahoney, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Kevin Ballinger, Executive Vice President and President, Interventional Cardiology
Dan Brennan, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Art Butcher, Executive Vice President and President, Asia Pacific
Wendy Carruthers, Senior Vice President, Human Resources
Jodi Eddy, Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer
Joe Fitzgerald, Executive Vice President and President, Rhythm Management
Ed Mackey, Executive Vice President, Global Operations
Dr. Ian Meredith, Executive Vice President and Global Chief Medical Officer
Jeff Mirviss, Executive Vice President and President, Peripheral Interventions
Maulik Nanavaty, Senior Vice President and President, Neuromodulation
Dave Pierce, Executive Vice President and President, Medsurg and President, Endoscopy
Desiree Ralls-Morrison, Senior Vice President and General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
Meghan Scanlon, Senior Vice President and President, Urology and Pelvic Health
Brad Sorenson, Senior Vice President, Manufacturing and Supply Chain
Eric Thépaut, Executive Vice President and President, Europe, Middle East and Africa