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COVID-19 and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Welcome to the intersection of COVID-19 and equity, diversity, and inclusion.

A Special Message of Gratitude to Essential Workers

The Youth Advisory Council at UC San Diego's Center for Community Health expresses our deepest gratitude for all essential and frontline workers facing the brunt of the challenges that come with COVID-19. #UnsungHeros



COVID-19 has infiltrated nearly every corner of the world and, tragically, continues to claim lives of all ages and induce severe inflammatory illness in children. While the novel coronavirus is impartial to who may contract the disease, data shows us that marginalized communities are bearing the worst of this public health crisis. The Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion has created this page as a resource to help spread awareness and actionable insights on how we mitigate hate, bias and the health and economic disparities at the intersection of COVID-19 and equity, diversity, and inclusion. 

The resources on this page will be updated regularly to bring you the latest data, research, and insights from health care leaders, conversations with social and economic experts, and stories from you, on the multidimensional toll of the coronavirus pandemic and how we work together to support those most impacted. 

Equity and Inclusion During COVID-19

The Council of Chief Diversity Officers at the University of California presents the below guidelines to assist campus decision makers, faculty, administrators, students and staff on providing supportive, positive, and inclusive campus climates during the COVID-19 crisis.

  1. Reject racism, sexism, xenophobia and all hateful or intolerant speech, both in person and online. Be an "up-stander," and discourage others from engaging in such behavior.
  2. Address unequal access to technology, hardware and software. Ask students about their level of access to technology. Use that information to inform the technology choices for your courses. For employees, consider offering loaner laptops or assisting with access to internet service.
  3. Ensure web accessibility for students with disabilities when using online learning or remote instruction. See this webinar for more tips.
  4. Be inclusive and remember that everyone has different circumstances. Continue to treat everyone with respect, both in their presence and in their absence. Do not resort or revert to unkind discussions about people, individuals or groups who may not be in your immediate social circle.
  5. Advocate for students who have fewer resources. Many students rely on the housing, dining, health care and employment provided on campus. Consider keeping residence and dining halls open and allow for access to campus food pantries, basic needs, health resources and child care centers.
  6. For student employees and part-time or seasonal employees, explore work assignments that can be performed remotely. If that’s not possible, consider offering paid administrative leave under UC systemwide policy.
  7. In completing faculty and staff recruitments, try to make the virtual interview process as consistent for all candidates and as similar as possible to to the experience (e.g., if people can ask questions during an in-person job talk, arrangements should be made to permit them to ask questions during a remote job interview).
  8. Be patient with one another during email, text and video conversations. There can be a tendency to want immediate answers, and typically friendly ways of communicating can break down without deliberate effort to maintain kindness. Try to be as clear as possible in online conversations. Don't assume that broad, sweeping statements will be fully understood.
  9. Be kind and understanding regarding expectations. Relax requirements that can become impositions, such as demanding business attire for online video meetings or classes, or penalizing participants in online classes for wearing casual attire. Remember that people may be operating without resources and access to many material items and services. Keep the focus on what is most important.
  10. Build community through virtual coffee/tea hours with colleagues, office-mates, students and faculty.
  11. Consider offering commencement and recognition events online and/or postposing in-person ceremonies for a later date. Many UC students will be the first in their families to graduate from college, so the physical act of crossing the stage is very important.
  12. Do not use terms such as “Chinese Virus” or other terms which cast either intentional or unintentional projections of hatred toward Asian communities, and do not allow the use of these terms by others. Refer to the virus as either “COVID-19” or “coronavirus” in both oral and written communications.
  13. Support the health care workers who are on the front line of this pandemic. Help ensure that they get the rest they need, can attend to personal and familial needs, and are supported as health care workers and as people.
  14. “Flatten the curve” by attending to the health-related guidelines set forth by federal and local governments.
  15. Remember to practice self-care! Recognize your own stress, manage yourself before managing others, and make time for your physical and emotional needs.

Download a copy of Equity and Inclusion During COVID-19.
Coronavirus: University of California Updates and Resources, Office of the President, University of California
Rejecting Coronavirus Xenophobia, Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, UC Davis
COVID-19: What’s in a Name, Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, UCLA
At Our Best: Embodying the Principles of Community, Newsroom, UC Merced
Inclusivity During Difficult Times, UC Irvine Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, UC Irvine
Online Learning Research Center, School of Education, UC Irvine
Inclusion, Equity, and Access While Teaching Remotely, Center for Teaching Excellence, Rice University
Webinar on Online Education and Website Accessibility, Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education
Completing Ongoing Faculty Searches, Office of Academic Personnel, UC Irvine

Council of Chief Diversity Officers, University of California

Ricardo Alcaino, Director, Equal Opportunity & Discrimination Prevention Office, UC Santa Barbara

Oscar Dubon, Vice Chancellor for Equity & Inclusion, UC Berkeley

Douglas Haynes, Vice Chancellor for Inclusive Excellence, UC Irvine

Jerry Kang, Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, UCLA

Mariam Lam, Associate Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer, UC Riverside

Dania Matos, Associate Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer, UC Merced

Renee Navarro, Vice Chancellor of Diversity and Outreach, UC San Francisco

Becky Petitt, Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, UC San Diego

Teresa Maria Linda Scholz, Interim Associate Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer, UC Santa Cruz

Renetta Garrison Tull, Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, UC Davis

Yvette Gullatt, Vice Provost for Diversity and Engagement, UC Office of the President

Liz Halimah, Associate Vice Provost for Diversity and Engagement, UC Office the President

Community Engagement & Positive Impact

How the Rady Community is Showing Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The UC San Diego community is working tirelessly to find solutions to the obstacles we face as a result of the the pandemic. From critical research to combat COVID-19 to making masks for healthcare workers, we are proud to witness inspiring acts of resilience and care.

COVID-19: The Jacobs School Community Engages

The UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering community is stepping up to address many challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has put before us. Here the school highlights a cross section of projects that Jacobs School faculty, students, staff and alumni have launched in response to COVID-19. 

Earth 2.0 @ UC San Diego: COVID-19 Rapid Response

Earth2.0 is a vision of our world with all of us working together. We believe many hands can make even the biggest problems solvable. We see this happening now and our mission is to foster and innovate to help every citizen share their story and contribute to Earth2.0. Imagine a network of Us.

How Rady School of Management Alumni are Responding to COVID-19 

Get inspired by Rady School alumni acts of care during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

How Can I Tell Which Charity to Support During This Crisis? (NC State University) 

The current COVID-19 crisis has the nonprofit sector facing challenges on an unprecedented scale. So, yes, nonprofits need our help. But how can we determine which organizations to support?

News & Expert Opinion Pieces

Don’t Blame Econ 101 for the Plight of Essential Workers (The Atlantic)

They’ve been systematically devalued for years. But they don’t have to be.

The Coronavirus Was an Emergency Until Trump Found Out Who Was Dying (The Atlantic)

The pandemic has exposed the bitter terms of our racial contract, which deems certain lives of greater value than others.

Caring for Mental Health in Communities of Color During COVID-19 (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) 

Lack of access to testing, fear of being profiled while wearing face masks, and other issues are increasing toxic stress and straining mental health in communities of color. Learn what one leader is doing about it.

Business as Unusual: Will the Pandemic Lead to a Lost Generation of Diverse Talent? (Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP) 

Annette Byron and Timothy Wilkins of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, examine the structural impediments that led to the disparate impact of the coronavirus on black and ethnic minorities and how business should reimagine their approach to diversity and inclusion through novel approaches to remote working, supply chains and community investment.

Impact of COVID-19 on Marginalized Communities (San Diego Union Tribune)

Some students at UC San Diego who set out to document the oral histories of San Diego’s ethnic communities also are witnessing firsthand the impact the coronavirus pandemic is having on marginalized communities.

Thinking About Racial Disparities in COVID-19 Impacts Through a Science-Informed, Early Childhood Lens (Harvard University)

Structural legacies of racism and other cross-generational traumas increase susceptibility to the kinds of health impairments that result in greater risk of harm from COVID-19. Evidence is also mounting that the origins of these common diseases are affected by significant adversity during the prenatal period and first 2-3 years after birth.

For Black Men, Homemade Masks May Be a Risk All Their Own (Time Magazine)

The CDC calls for Americans to wear cloth masks when in public, fashioned, for instance, from an old t-shirt or bandana. The suggestions are meant to reduce the spread of the virus while dissuading people from buying the medical-grade masks so badly needed in hospitals. But some black men, like Hoskins, are worried about the potential danger in wearing a homemade face covering.

Eight Ways to Advance Societal Equity in Battling Coronavirus (UCLA)

Professors Chandra L. Ford (UCLA), Bita Amani (Charles Drew University), Keith Norris (UCLA), Kia Skrine Jeffers (UCLA), and Randall Akee (UCLA), wrote an open letter that outlines eight recommendations to prioritize equity in policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Social Distance: The Racial Contract (The Atlantic)

On this episode of the Social Distance podcast, James Hamblin and Katherine Wells are joined by Adam Serwer, who explains the connection between the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia and the racially disparate outcomes that have emerged from the coronavirus pandemic. (Episode Transcript)

Ask Code Switch: The Coronavirus Edition (NPR)

We asked you to email us all of your questions about race and COVID-19, and you sent us some great ones. We went through the inbox and narrowed them down to six we wanted to sink our teeth into. (Episode Transcript)

The Brain Architects Podcast: COVID-19 Special Edition Series (Harvard University)

While the coronavirus pandemic has changed many things around the world, it has not stopped child development. In this series of special episodes of The Brain Architects podcast, we aim to share helpful resources and ideas in support of all those who are caring for children while dealing with the impacts of COVID-19. (Transcripts available on individual episode pages.)

Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast: COVID-19 pandemic highlights health disparities (Mayo Clinic)

On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Virk discusses racial and gender equity during the COVID-19 pandemic.(Episode Transcript)

Research, Reports & Actionable Resources

How to Challenge Systemic Racism (Inside Higher Ed)

Practical steps faculty and administrators can take to challenge systemic racism

COVID-19’s Effect on Minority-Owned Small Businesses (McKinsey & Company) 

Already vulnerable, minority-owned small businesses brace for disproportionate impact. Here's how to help. 

Diversity Still Matters (McKinsey Quarterly, May 2020)

Inclusion and diversity are at risk in the crisis, but are critical for business recovery, resilience, and reimagination. 

COVID-19 Social Impact Research (University of Chicago)

The University of Chicago Poverty Lab and the Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation at Chicago Booth have embarked on a series of joint research projects to better understand the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on small businesses and households. Check this page for the latest results. 

Supporting LGBTQ Youth During the COVID-19 Pandemic (HRC)

HRC, in partnership with the American School Counseling Association, has released a tip sheet for school counselors on how to support LGBTQ students and mitigate some of the emerging challenges they face while social distancing. This new resource provides actionable steps, recommendations and important considerations to use when working with LGBTQ students in virtual settings. 

How COVID-19 May Affect Nonprofits (And What They Can Do About It) (NC State University)

The poor and the elderly are among those being hit the hardest by the COVID-19 epidemic, but the nonprofit organizations that meet the needs of these vulnerable populations are facing historic challenges of their own. There are things nonprofits can do to weather this storm while still meeting the needs of the people they serve.

The Full Picture: Why We Need More Demographic Data on COVID-19 (UCLA)

The pandemic has highlighted racial, ethnic and economic health disparities. Good data can prevent the gaps from widening, says UCLA's Ninez Ponce

The Lives and Livelihoods of Many in the LGBTQ Community are at Risk Amidst COVID-19 Crisis (HRC)

The LGBTQ community in the U.S. — along with many communities around the globe — will face unique challenges due to its economic and health care situations. Take a look at HRC Foundation's latest issue brief, "The Lives and Livelihoods of Many in the LGBTQ Community are at Risk Amidst COVID-19 Crisis," now.

COVID-19: How Business Can Support Women in Times of Crisis (United Nations)

Many of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic are hitting women disproportionately hard. This special Academy session covered steps business can take to respect and support the rights and lives of women and girls during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

COVID-19 in Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups (CDC)

Long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put some members of racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting COVID-19 or experiencing severe illness, regardless of age.

Videos, Webinars & Virtual Panels

 The Global Impacts of COVID-19 - A GPS Webinar Series

While we struggle to understand the ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy faculty and guest experts have come together to provide weekly seminars to try and help us understand where we might be headed as a global community. Each week we'll address a different sector impacted by the novel coronavirus. We hope you'll join us.

Rady Faculty for Market Impacts of COVID-19 Webinar Series

Distinguished faculty experts at the Rady School of Management are leading a free series of webinars aimed at analyzing the ongoing challenges businesses face during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Berkeley Conversations: COVID-19

Across the UC Berkeley campus, researchers are rising to meet the complex challenges of COVID-19  Through Q&A’s, seminars, and panel discussions, faculty from a wide range of disciplines—from epidemiology to economics to the computing and data now undergirding their work—will share what they know, and what they are learning. 

COVID-19: How Business Can Support Women in Times of Crisis (United Nations)

Advocates and Influencers Spring 2020 (UCSD)

Global COVID-19 Prevention (Stanford University) 

Staying Safe When COVID-19 Strikes (Stanford University) 

Virtual Resources for UC San Diego Community

Latest Updates

We understand that guidelines are changing quickly in response to shifting pandemic conditions. We’ve collected all of the key information that students and campus employees need to know before returning to in-person learning, teaching and working. 

Equity and Inclusion During COVID-19

The Council of Chief Diversity Officers at the University of California documents suggestions to assist campus decision makers, faculty, administrators, students and staff on providing supportive, positive, and inclusive campus climates during the COVID-19 crisis.

Find Your Virtual Community

The centers are a place of belonging where all students, staff and faculty can find community, explore social justice issues, gain leadership skills, engage in open dialogue and take part in educational and social activities. Connect with others through a host of virtual programs and events.



Keep Engaging 

Your hub for virtual student experiences. Drop by the Virtual Student Union or take a meditation break through the virtual wellness program.

Embrace Virtual Learning

Take advantage of the tools, learning strategies, and academic support available to you as you navigate this virtual learning environment.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

No problem or concern is too big or small. Make an appointment today. If you are in crisis outside of business hours, counselors are available by calling 858-534-3755, and selecting Option 2 from the voice menu.

UC San Diego 2.0

With a wealth of online offerings, UC San Diego is meeting the needs of students as the campus temporarily shifts to remote learning to protect the health and safety of the university community during the COVID-19 pandemic.



Master Remote Teaching and Presentations

This guide helps faculty prepare and perfect their remote instruction in order to minimize loss of learning time and lessen the impact of a disruption.

COVID-19: Parent and Family Resources

Find information and links to resources that support parents and families during COVID-19.


For virtual campus events related to equity, diversity, and inclusion visit our Events page. If you would like to have your virtual event included please notify us at

To help make your virtual event accessible and enjoyable for all, please refer to UC San Diego's Accessible Event Planning Guide.