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press release

PhRMA Joins CEO Action Plan for Diversity and Inclusion™ Pledge

Washington, D.C. (March 2, 2020) —  As part of the biopharmaceutical industry’s commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace, president and chief executive officer Stephen J. Ubl of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) signed the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion Pledge. PhRMA joins over 900 businesses who have committed to this pledge.

“PhRMA has a unique ability to highlight our members’ diversity and inclusion efforts and to help our industry learn from each other on how to build stronger, more diverse workforces,” said Ubl. “This pledge shows our commitment to diversity and inclusion – both internally and in the biopharmaceutical industry – which are essential to unlocking the scientific challenges that lead to new medicines and to helping the patients we serve.”

The CEO Action Plan for Diversity & Inclusion Pledge includes four goals that PhRMA is committed to working toward: 

  1. We will continue to make our workplace a trusting place to have complex, and sometimes difficult, conversations about diversity and inclusion.  
  2. We will expand unconscious bias education. 
  3. We will share best—and unsuccessful—practices
  4. We will create and share strategic inclusion and diversity plans with our board of directors. 

PhRMA signed onto this pledge in tandem with work currently underway to celebrate diversity in our workforce and promote best practices across the industry. Some of these activities include:

  • Convening diversity and inclusion leaders from our member companies to share best practices. From designing clinical trials with diversity in mind to establishing employee resource groups to conducting internal research on diversity and inclusion, our companies are actively engaging on this issue. We will reconvene annually to share successes and challenges with each other. 
  • Implementing a series of learning and development programs, including a course on inclusive leadership, that explore the concept of unconscious bias. PhRMA will continue to build on this effort in future programming to help employees identify blind spots and facilitate more open and honest conversations. 
  • Promoting an LGBTQ-inclusive team. PhRMA has long worked toward this effort, including supporting the Equality Act, hosting an annual Pride reception in Washington, D.C., financially supporting the Human Rights Campaign’s Healthcare Equality Index, and convening a health equity task force. 

“The pledge allows us to expand our insights on diversity and inclusion work beyond our own member companies by learning from other CEOs who have signed the pledge,” continued Ubl. “I look forward to deepening our understanding on this issue and building an even more inclusive workplace.” 

Learn more about the pledge here.


About PhRMA

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country’s leading innovative biopharmaceutical research companies, which are devoted to discovering and developing medicines that enable patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. Since 2000, PhRMA member companies have invested more than $900 billion in the search for new treatments and cures, including an estimated $79.6 billion in 2018 alone.