The recent events in response to several very visible racial injustices have been a strong catalyst to rally change. For me, it has been a painful reminder of the injustice that still exists in our country. I have watched with sadness, pain, and anger the repeated incidents of racism. I cannot imagine how hard these events must be for the black community and am truly horrified and saddened that this is a reality so many must face every day.
At a personal level, its also been a reminder of how much I must learn about the issues at hand – from large structural challenges to microaggressions that go unnoticed. I am committed to spending more time listening and learning.
I believe businesses have the power and responsibility to create cultures where hate and discrimination have no place and to use their power for change. Together we must strive to ensure our workplaces are places where everyone feels included, valued, and respected. We all have a voice, our actions, big and small, are a choice. Together, we can be a part of making positive change.
At Schneider Electric our core values clearly convey our strong support of racial equality as part of our company culture, within our communities, and for people everywhere. We stand in solidarity with our employees and communities who are demanding change to systems that discriminate against black lives.
Commitments we’re making today, which are the first steps, include;
- Schneider Electric will donate $75,000 to the NAACP – National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and we will match employee donations to eligible 501c3 non-profit organizations (100% match with $25 minimum donation). We will build a long-term commitment to NAACP and other organizations and activists working for social justice and racial equality.
- We are evaluating our learning plans and revising with a more robust and complete curriculum focused on awareness, inclusion, allyship, action, and open discussion.
- We continue to be strongly committed to building a diverse workforce through inclusive hiring, development, and retention practices. We are accelerating our ethnic diversity hiring ambitions for external hires and deepening our relationship with key HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities).
- We will expand our internal Black Professional Network Employee Resource Group chapters to improve and ensure our talented colleagues have equal opportunities for development and advancement. Externally we will continue to invest in NSBE (National Society of Black Engineers).
This will not be an event, but a sustainable change that we put a lot of energy behind. We are committed to making sure this change can evolve so we can best live the values that we represent. I will personally continue to listen, learn, and create a safe and open space for dialogue. We all have a role to play in creating a future where everyone is safe and has equal opportunities in life regardless of the color of their skin.