Mar 02, 2021

Top 10 racial equity initiatives from US firms in 2021

BlackHistoryMonth
racialequity
Diversity
socialjustice
Kate Birch
8 min
Expanding on racial equity pledges made in 2020, 10 leading US firms unveil educational and entrepreneurial focused initiatives during Black History Month
Expanding on racial equity pledges made in 2020, 10 leading US firms unveil educational and entrepreneurial focused initiatives during Black History Mon...

With just 1% of Fortune 500 companies led by Black Chief Executives, the need to tackle racial under-representation in business is urgent and big business is stepping up to the racial equity plate. 

While many organisations made DE&I pledges last summer in the wake of protests following the death of George Floyd, the pandemic has further exacerbated historic challenges for Black, Brown and under-represented groups, with firms further upping the racial equity ante.  

Since the start of 2021, a number of large firms have for the first time published DE&I reports (take Tesla and Netflix) or implemented policies that hold its leaders directly accountable for making tangible progress on DEI (McDonalds Company). And 48 global firms, including US companies CBG, Blackrock, Google, Microsoft, Bank of America, Cisco and Coca-Cola Company, have signed up to the World Economic Forum’s newly formed coalition Partnering for Racial Justice in Business Initiative committed to improving racial and ethnic justice in the workplace.

This momentum has given rise to a record number of racial equity pledges, initiatives and commitments announced by companies during Black History Month in February 2021. 

We highlight the top 10 initiatives unveiled by US firms during Black History Month which through education and business funding aim to help expand opportunities for communities of colour across the US and help to build the next generation of diverse leaders.

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