Stop the Violence


Community Violence

In 2015 the 50 largest U.S cities saw a 17% rise in homicides, the biggest increase since 1990.

Domestic Abuse

In just one day in the United States, more than 67,000 victims of domestic violence sought services from domestic violence programs and shelters.

Sexual Assault

Nearly 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men reported experiencing rape at some time in their lives.


Violence invades every part of our lives: our homes, our communities, and even our most intimate relationships.  Too much violence affects too many people too often. Why?

Because we do not respect ourselves and others.  Violent criminals lack respect for their targets.  Domestic abusers lack respect for themselves and their families.  Sexual predators lack respect for their victims. What can we do?

Respect is the answer. Everyone believes they should be treated with respect.  Each of us can take the first step of treating others with the respect they deserve—at home, in our schools and workplaces, and in our communities.



You can get involved and do your part.  How?

  1. CHAMPION violence prevention by turning your words into good deeds.  Get involved!
  1. ADVOCATE for violence prevention.  Learn the facts and speak up!
  1. DONATE your time, money, or goods to the cause of violence prevention.  Volunteer, attend, or support national or local efforts.  Make it count!


Watch how the Dignity & Respect Campaign shows RESPECT for victims of domestic violence with our Ceramic Tile Quilt project.

For more information about how you can bring a Ceramic Tile Quilt project to your organization or community, contact the Dignity & Respect Campaign at 855.222.8211

Mattell’s More Inclusive Barbies

Mattell recently announced they would be introducing a wide variety of new body types to their Barbie line. These include curvy, petite and tall as a well as a variety of new skin tones and hairstyles.

“Barbie reflects the world girls see around them. Her ability to evolve and grow with the times, while staying true to her spirit, is central to why Barbie is the number one fashion doll in the world” -Richard Dickson, President and Chief Operating Officer Mattell

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Starbucks’ Dancing Barista

Sam, an Autistic Teen from Toronto thought his movement disorder would prevent him from ever being a barista. After landing a job at Starbucks, Sam’s manager Chris Ali realized his movements could be channeled into playful dancing. This led to a viral video of Sam being taken, an appearance on the Ellen show, and a big self-esteem boost for a wonderful young man.

“Sam has a such a big heart and he’s made me a better person” -Chris Ali, Sam’s manager

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Prevent Bullying


Bullying at School

Over 3.2 millions students are victims of bullying each year.

Bullying in the Workplace

72% of the adult America public is familiar with instances of workplace bullying.

Bullying on the Field

40 to 50% of student athletes have experienced anything from mild harassment to severe abuse in their sport of choice.


Bullying happens whenever someone feels they don’t have the power to stop verbal or physical abuse happening to them.   

Bullying is caused by a lack of respect not only by the bully, but also by anyone who sees or knows about it and remains silent.  That silence contributes to the continuation—and possibly the increase—in harassment.

The effects of bullying can include absences at school or work, a decline in grades, job loss, and long-lasting impact on physical or mental health.  What can we do to prevent bullying?

Respect is the answer. Everyone believes they should be treated with respect.  Each of us can take the first step of treating others with the respect they deserve—at home, in our schools and workplaces, and in our communities.



You can get involved and do your part.  How?

  1. CHAMPION bullying prevention by turning your words into good deeds.  Get involved!
  1. ADVOCATE to stop bullying.  Learn the facts and speak up!

DONATE your time, money, or goods to the cause of bullying prevention.  Volunteer, attend, or support national or local efforts.  Make it count!


Do Your Part, Prevent Bullying

For more information about how you can bring the Dignity & Respect/Best of the Batch Foundation program project to your school or sports team, contact the Dignity & Respect Campaign at xxxxxxxxxxxxx.

Build Cultural Awareness. LGBT High School Students

Our teen years are some of the most emotionally vulnerable for most of us. A December 2013 article in Psychology Today states that scientists are just beginning to better understand the dramatic shifts that occur in a teen’s brain during adolescence. It’s not just their brains, but also changes in their bodies and minds that teens must navigate. Between 4% and 10% of teens are experiencing these transformations as lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, or transgender (LGBT) adolescents.


Media regularly report bullying of LGBT high school students. The most recent National School Climate Survey reports that instances of hostility toward LGBT students have declined somewhat since the biennial survey began in 1999. Yet, LGBT students who experience victimization because of their sexual orientation are more than three times as likely to have missed school in the past month, had a lower grade point average (GPA) than students who were less often harassed, and were twice as likely not to consider college or trade school.

What is the climate for LGBT students? How do they feel? What can each of us do to make the
world a better place for all LGBT students to live?

Download the LGBT High School Students Reading List (pdf) and Discussion Guide (pdf).

Build Cultural Awareness. Living With a Disability

Nearly one in five—about 56.7 million—people in the United States have a disability, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. More than half of them identify their disability as severe.

How does a disability affect a person’s life? What challenges and limitations are part of daily life? More than 15 million adults have difficulty doing housework, using the phone, or preparing meals. Almost 20 million people have difficulty lifting and grasping, which includes lifting a bag of groceries or grasping a glass or a pencil.

People with disabilities are employed at a significantly lower rate than those with no disability—41% compared to 79%, respectively—while the likelihood of persistent poverty is greater. More statistics are available here. Building understanding and communication is the first step in helping people with disabilities.

Download the Living with a Disability Reading List (pdf) and Discussion Guide (pdf).

Leading the Way in Patient Care. UPMC Practitioner Profiles


Tami Minnier had the responsibility of caring for other living beings for as long as she can remember. Growing up on a 300-acre dairy farm in northwest Pennsylvania, she milked cows and had her first horse by the time she was five years old.

When she was just two months old, her father suffered a heart attack, adding to the degree of responsibility she felt as a young girl on the farm. “We were told, ‘Your dad might not live long,’ and because of that, I was drawn to medicine and drawn to health care,” Tami said.

These transformative experiences influenced Tami’s career at every stage as she now serves as the Chief Quality Officer for UPMC, responsible for the patient experience of individuals who are receiving care at more than 20 hospitals in the region. Drawing from them has allowed her to put authentic care at the forefront of her leadership style and initiatives, which all center on treating patients as the unique individuals they are.

Her passion for patient safety stemmed from her partnership and friendship with Sorrel King, mother of Josie King, a child who tragically died at Hopkins in 2001 as a result of a medical error. Tami listened to the mother speak at a forum and it revolutionized the way she thought of patient care.

“Sitting in the audience, I was so struck by two things. Josie died the same month my son was born. We were talking about rapid response teams and Sorrel sat there and said, ‘Why can’t I call one of those? I am the mom.’ I listened to her say that and I thought, ‘She is right—why can’t she?’” Tami said.

At the time, Tami returned to UPMCand told her staff, “We need to let families call rapid response teams.”

“They thought I had lost my mind and I needed to go back to where I was. It was such a paradigm shift. I picked up the phone, I called Sorrel King, who didn’t know me from Adam, and said, ‘I was one of the 5,000 people you spoke to and I was wondering if you would like to come to Pittsburgh and talk to me about it because I would like to give it a shot.’ It’s all kind of history from there.”

What evolved from that experience and those conversations is now called Condition H, which means: Condition Help, at UPMC hospitals. It allows caregivers to call for emergency help within the hospital without needing to wait for a clinician to make the decision. Between 500-600 hospitals in the United States have adopted Condition Help since Tami first established it at UPMC hospitals.

“It was one of my first very strong labors of love of empowering patients and families, particularly when you think about little ones and older people – they are the most vulnerable and people need to be able to advocate for themselves.”

Amy Ranier lived in Pittsburgh until the age of 7 before her family moved to the state of Indiana. A second generation communications professional, her father oversaw public relations for Purdue University.

Like Tami, Amy loves and cares for animals, specifically raising horses.  “I have kids who are 7 and 9 and they ride, too. It’s something I have done my whole life and it’s a good outlet,” Amy said.

As Senior Director of Patient Experience for UPMC, Amy leads enterprise-level initiatives to improve patient engagement through effective education and communication, patient satisfaction improvement and shared decision making. Amy’s team facilitates the incorporation of patient and family input into all health care initiatives to drive change and cultural evolution within the organization. By using quantitative and qualitative data to develop strategy, the team works to improve the experience of UPMC’s patients and their families.

Amy is also the Director of The Beckwith Institute, a grant organization whose primary goal is to fund both immediate and long-term changes that significantly improve health care.

What’s Amy’s motivation on a daily basis? Both her colleagues and the patients UPMC serves.

Amy is proud of the work they have been able to accomplish as a team, particularly when it comes to transforming UPMC’s culture. “We are very good at a lot of things, but while kindness, compassion, dignity and respect may have been engrained in individual people, it wasn’t a part of the organization-wide conversation. You can’t focus on patient satisfaction unless you look at employees and see how we treat each other,” Amy said. “It is a work in progress and as much as we have seen an enormous amount of change, I can’t believe how quickly it has happened. But that change takes time. You can have most people on board with you, but it takes time to change a culture.”
“We have the right people at the table,” Amy said.

Build Cultural Awareness. Importance of Religion and Food

The strong commitment people have to their faith is demonstrated in many ways, including how and what food they consume.

For example, food is an important aspect of Passover, which begins this year in the evening of Friday, April 22 and ends in the evening of Saturday, April 30. Throughout the eight days of Passover, observant Jews refrain from eating leavened bread, and instead consume matzos.  The seder is the centerpiece of the Passover experience.

Food abstinence and fasting are evident in many religions.  For centuries, Roman Catholics were restricted from eating meat on Fridays; now that restriction is limited to specific holy days.  Consider this chart of Food Practices and Restrictions of World Religions prepared by Ruth A. Waibel (download pdf).  Also, many foods are religious symbols.

Download the Building Cultural Awareness Reading List (pdf) and Discussion Guide (pdf).

Leading The Way in Patient Care. UPMC Q&A

As part of our Leading The Way in Patient Care series featuring UPMC we conducted an interview with Chief Quality Officer Tami Minnier and Senior Director of Patient Experience Amy Ranier. They spoke on the CHRIS model and other ways UPMC is Leading The Way in Patient Care.

Q&A with Tami Minnier and Amy Ranier

Q:  How important is process to your approach to patient care?

A: Tami: Every patient care process is designed to deliver the right result. What we know is that there are many processes in healthcare that are broken. My passion to learn about process has been for me to take that knowledge, bring it back into healthcare and patient care situations, and say, “We are not succeeding here because we don’t have the right process.” What is the best process to help that nurse on Saturday night know who to call? Is it to add five minutes to their new employee orientation when they are being barraged by 500 other people with new information? Or is it a simple phone number? All you have to remember is UPMC’s CHRIS Hotline for Patient Needs. What is a more effective design for sustainable, reliable performance?

Sadly, most health care professions have had no training in process. We are critically trained to the high heavens, but when you want to try to help clinicians understand process, some of them are as naive to say, “Well, you just tell people to do it.”

That is the key to our success. You have to have clinical credibility with your audience, but the knowledge of process is critical. If you don’t build a process well in health care, or restaurant management, you are not going to have good outcomes.


Q: What is unique about the way you gather feedback?

A: Amy: We survey at 100 percent of our patients, above and beyond what is required by law, because we want the feedback. We do this because we want to, and we use that feedback as basis for change. Every comment gets read, which includes about 8,000 a month just for physician office visits. We post all of the outpatient physician ratings and comments on


Q: What is unique about the way employees are held accountable in terms of living these values?

A: Amy: The employees on the frontlines are the ones providing compassionate care, and this shows their work is valid. If someone isn’t living our values, they cannot stay here. We are held to a standard and if you don’t show you live the values, you must change that if you want to stay here


Q: Tami, you are a clinician by background but Amy comes out of marketing. How does Amy’s background in marketing contribute to the success of your efforts?

A: Tami: One of the key things about marketing is that it is fundamentally a communication science. How do you communicate better to convey a feeling and a message? When you think about all of the patient experiences, one of the number one issues is that we need to communicate better. They might say, “People didn’t understand what I was saying.” Amy’s knowledge of that has been amazing because she brings a completely different skillset to the table than our clinicians.

That is probably why our partnership has been so good. I will be talking about something we should do and she plays it back to me through her lens. Before you know it, we have a good clinical concept that has been put through a communications lens to be able to say, “This is how we could use it, this is how it would feel, or maybe we should use this word instead of this one.” She translates it in a way that clinicians can understand, but also in a way that patients can understand.


Q: Who inspires you?

A: Tami: At home, my inspiration has always been my parents or my son. I have a very small family, but my parents were incredible and my mom is still alive and she has my back every day. My son is 15 and he is such a good, good kid. We are very close and I am very blessed to have him.


Q: What keeps you going?

A: Tami: Interacting with patients is what keeps me going—making a difference for patients. I love my team. I would be nothing without the folks who work with me. I have been very blessed to have good colleagues.


Q: What are your passions outside of work?

A: Tami: Today, I still love to read, especially mystery novels. That brings me a lot of joy. I love being outside, so I love to be out walking, digging in the dirt and planting flowers. Anything that is outside and interacting with the environment. Most recently, I have started to bake more, particularly cupcakes. I am working on making the world’s best cupcake.


Q: What is in store for the future?

A: Tami: I still don’t know what I want to do when I grow up. I have a passion for patients and for making healthcare better, so I am going to keep doing that. I have a deep rooted passion for making things better and resolving problems.


Q: What is your motivation?

A: Amy: A lot of it is entirely the people I work with and the belief that we are working to make things better for patients, employees and the community we serve. Tami is an inspirational leader and there are so many people like that here. My entire focus is, “How do we make things better for our patients?” That’s what gets me here.

Leading the Way in Patient Care. UPMC


It’s 11 p.m. on a Saturday night at a UPMC hospital in Pittsburgh when a nurse realizes his patient doesn’t speak English.

But this doesn’t delay, derail, or impact the quality of care the patient receives.

Thanks to Tami Minnier’s leadership and insight as the Chief Quality Officer for UPMC, the nurse calls an internal toll-free number and is connected to a translator, ensuring the patient’s needs are met as soon as possible.

“If you, as a patient, have that translator, you can understand your care, ask the nurse questions, and ask the nurse to explain something that you may not have understood otherwise,” Tami said. “It enhances the patient experience.”

Creating a culture where patients are acknowledged and respected as whole and unique individuals through the CHRIS Initiative is exactly why Tami, Amy Ranier, and their team at UPMC are being honored by the Dignity and Respect Campaign. They Lead the Way, going above and beyond in the implementation of everyday operations.  Their best practice in patient care ensures each patient is heard, respected, understood, and cared for as an individual person to the best of everyone’s ability.

When the CHRIS Initiative was first introduced to UPMC clinicians and employees, a graphic image of a person made up of puzzle pieces represented the program. The CHRIS patient care model allows leadership to help staff understand and put into action the value that not all people are the same – but they are all equally wonderful.  Each puzzle piece signified a different attribute of a single patient: religious beliefs, sexual orientation, cultural background, personal goals, and other characteristics and values.

“As a caregiver, you need to figure out what is in those puzzle pieces for each of your patients. When you assume you know, and when you think you know, is when you fail. When you don’t meet your patients’ expectations, or you don’t deliver the care that is important to them, or if we don’t communicate to them in a way that they understand, that is when we fail,” Tami said.

CHRIS is at the core of UPMC’s patient care programming to the extent that now, each of the variables—or puzzle pieces—of a patient are embedded in electronic records. When a clinician admits a person to a hospital, questions about his or her religious beliefs, sexual orientation and cultural background are asked, so that each employee approaches the patient from the perspective of dignity and respect. The program makes sure every employee views every patient as a whole person with a complex identity and personal history.

In addition to embedding the CHRIS philosophy into UPMC’s electronic records system, the initiative can also be seen in action with a hotline that can be used by employees any time, day or night.

They simply call UPMC’s CHRIS Hotline for Patient Needs and a question is answered or a problem is solved. As a large organization with multiple locations, UPMC recognized a need to give employees a resource if they experienced a situation they weren’t sure how to handle.

“We have woven dignity and respect into the fabric of the organization,” Tami said.

These programs aren’t the only aspect of the organization keeping the values of dignity and respect at the forefront of employees’ minds and actions. The success is also measured by holding employees accountable. Fifty percent of an employee’s annual evaluation and potential merit increase stems from whether or not he or she is actually living the values of dignity and respect.

UPMC also evaluates potential new employees through the lens of these values, asking specific questions about how they react in various situations. This behavioral approach to the hiring process allows UPMC to make sure new recruits are ready to participate in a culture that values dignity and respect in daily operations—not just with words, but in practice.

In addition, UPMC added a Dignity and Respect Index to its employee engagement survey to measure success. Employees are asked about how they perceive the principles of dignity and respect are being implemented in the organization and how authentic they feel in the day to day activity and interactions taking place. From the patients’ perspectives, the program’s success is measured in the number of complaints and grievances.

“You realize that it is about how you have to change your culture, and as a result, we have seen the number of egregious complaints really reduced. I am really proud of that,” Tami said.

Amy Ranier, senior director of the patient experience at UPMC, is a member of Tami’s team. One of the many initiatives she helps to lead includes the Culture of Service Excellence initiative at UPMC. Leadership looked to direct-reports for support in developing this program, which has been led by employees. The training contentdeveloped for and by employeeshas been presented in four-hour sessions to nearly 60,000 individuals thus far throughout UPMCUPMC’s facilities.

“Those are employees who raised their hands and said ‘I want to train my staff in service excellence,’” Amy said. “Every hospital president and chief nurse went through the training and now we are at the staff level. We are so proud of this initiative. How we treat each other matters and how we treat our patients matters. It sends the message that this is how we do things at UPMC.”

The Culture of Service Excellence initiative is another demonstration of the commitment that Tami and Amy have to changing the culture for the long-term. Involving employees in every step has been the key to embedding the values of dignity and respect into operations.

“Tami and I lead a group called the Patient Experience Leaders. This is an informal group that meets every month. They developed the content of Culture of Service Excellence initiative. I cannot thank enough our training and development teams. They supported the training and this came out of the patient experience,” Amy said.

The results prove that leadership has communicated its initiatives effectively, making sure every patient who comes through UPMC’s doors is treated with respect and kindness every step of the way.

“Everyone is a mosaic with their own world experience and you can’t make assumptions. You need to think about how you approach people,” Tami said. “You have to build the right process if you want the right outcome.”