The murder of George Floyd, just five miles from my Minneapolis home, sparked a new reckoning with systemic racism in the United States. Across the country — including in corporate America — people are seeking to better understand the disparities in education, home ownership, health, jobs, economic opportunity, law enforcement, and justice that have long shaped Black life in this country. The pandemic has magnified these disparities, motivating many Americans to take a stand for reform.
It’s increasingly clear to many that our systems are – problematically – performing the way they were designed to. We must choose to create anti-racist systems in our companies and communities instead. We need action plans and perseverance, across sectors, to turn this moment into a lasting movement.
Because every company is unique, there will never be a “one-size-fits-all” approach for taking action on racism. But a common framework and principles can help.
The one I rely on in my work at Target and with other groups is intended to complement, not replace, existing strategies. Built around eight pillars, it reflects insights curated from a variety of leading local and national organizations and thought leaders, as well as my own lived experience as a Black woman.
Creating anti-racist systems and structures requires the combined power of business, NGOs, government and individual citizens. We have access to a range of important voices in the racial equity and social justice movement – from newer entrants like Black Lives Matter to longstanding entities like National Urban League (NUL).
And in corporate America, early signs of change are promising. Discussions about race, diversity, equity and inclusion are happening as part of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) strategies, and an increasing number of leaders.
Read the full article about implementing an anti-racist business framework by Laysha Ward at Harvard Business Review.
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