Message from the SGO Board of Directors Regarding the 2023 Annual Meeting in Tampa, FL
In the wake of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson decision, the SGO Board of Directors convened a special meeting to discuss whether to hold the 2023 Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer in Tampa, Florida, as planned, or to consider other options, including relocating or having a virtual-only meeting.
After a comprehensive review of Florida’s current abortion laws and detailed discussion about the educational, financial, operational and social impacts of moving the meeting, the Board’s consensus was to hold the meeting in Tampa as planned.
While financial commitments to event venues and area vendors informed the final decision to stay in Florida, other factors contributed to the final decision. In future event contracts, a frustration of purpose clause will be included, allowing for greater financial flexibility to relocate if political climates or other factors misalign with the organization’s mission and member commitments.
Most importantly, the majority of board discussion centered on the opportunities SGO members have to personify our mission and practice our Principles for Health Care Reform while in Florida in March 2023.
We asked each other – In what ways can we use our commitments to advocacy, education, research and inter-disciplinary collaboration for good, regardless of meeting location? What shifts can and should be made to our meetings to better live out these commitments?
Board leaders are confident SGO members and staff can and will organize effectively to find answers to these questions and others in the months and years to come. Additionally, we encourage SGO members to consider actions they may take to increase awareness about how laws and regulations inform their practice and the field at large.
We welcome insights and ideas on how we can best live out SGO commitments in upcoming member engagements and meetings, especially in Tampa in the spring. Feedback may be provided in this form.