Board of Trustees Statements
March 29, 2021 Statement
The American Optometric Association stands united in opposing acts of violence, harassment and discrimination against people of any group or community. We condemn all actions of hate and the biases they engender. AOA supports doctors of optometry in continuing to use their influence as trusted physicians and community leaders to counteract baseless biases and ensure the use of factual information in all matters related to patient care and public health. Doctors of optometry do not tolerate language or actions that denigrate anyone based on their race, nationality or other identifying characteristic. Together with our affiliates, the AOA stands ready to connect members with appropriate resources, including state and federal civil rights and law enforcement authorities, to address incidences of bias, discrimination and hate. Doctors can address any questions or needs to President@aoa.org.
Doctors of optometry embrace our role in building a better profession and a better world. We draw strength from our camaraderie as a profession and our care for our patients, staffs and communities. We recognize that acts of bias, as well as mass violence, wound our communities, including our member doctors and students as well as their staff members and the patients for whom we care. As a leading professional association of doctors and students and a nationwide force for health and vision, our AOA affirms its unyielding belief that there is no place in our country for racism, intolerance, violence or hate.
June 9, 2020 Statement
The American Optometric Association (AOA) has a clear mission: To advocate for the profession of optometry and serve doctors of optometry in meeting the eye care needs of the public. Through the important community-by-community and nationwide dialog resulting from the death of George Floyd, the AOA affirms its unyielding belief that there is no place in our country for racism, intolerance or hate.
As America seeks a national understanding of the unacceptable harms that racism inflicts, the AOA stands with all of those affected by tragedies. We recognize, support and embrace our profession's leadership role in helping communities, states and our country come together, heal and stand stronger than ever against inequality and injustice.
Doctors of optometry take and, each day, fulfill a solemn oath to provide care with compassion and due regard for the human rights and dignity of patients. The AOA will continue to support doctors of optometry in all efforts to safeguard and improve health in their communities, including addressing social determinants of health, and to further expand access to sight-saving and lifesaving, patient-centered care. In places where the delivery of essential optometric care has been disrupted, the AOA will continue to seek to assure its rapid restoration through advocacy and relief efforts, including the good works of Optometry Cares ®—The AOA Foundation, which administers Optometry’s Fund for Disaster Relief.
The family of optometry is a nationwide force committed to healing, unity and service, and our work has never been more important.
Violators of antitrust laws are potentially subject to criminal and civil penalties, as well as “immediate dismissal” from their position or relationship with the AOA, even if they were unaware their actions were not legal.