The events over the last month have shaken us all – myself included.
Eric Garner. Michael Brown. Breonna Taylor. George Floyd – these are just a few of our Black neighbors, friends, peers, and family struck down senselessly in a society still steeped in racial inequality, bias, and broken systems.
This will not be your normal newsletter.
Many have not only spoken up, but acted against this social injustice. In an effort to be part of the solution, these are the actions I’m taking as an individual:
- Dedicate time to learning more about racism in the US and my role in stopping it
- Use this information to speak out against racism and racist microaggressions
- Use my voice and any platforms I have to help promote Black voices and Black stories
The remainder of this newsletter will walk through how we’re making similar commitments at Drift, as well as additional resources on becoming better allies.
Drift is committed to including more Black voices in the work we do. Here are two examples of that commitment in action:
- Addressing & acting on anti-racism in tech: DEI leaders at Drift, Wayfair, SmartBear, DraftKings, and Toast shared insights and tools for incorporating anti-racist behavior at work and at home.
- Bringing more Black voices to our marketing: Many Black voices are not being heard right now. We are going to amplify Black voices and use our platform to further highlight inclusive and diverse stories. If you would like to share your voice, email our head of content marketing at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Having these conversations at the industry, company, and marketing level means we can do more to bring greater diversity to our messaging and workforce. And it’s just a start. You can learn more about our ongoing commitment in this update from Drift’s CEO, David Cancel.</p?
We must educate ourselves on the history of racism, and how to build a society that is anti-racist. Here is a list of resources with articles, movies, podcasts, and book recommendations to help you do that in your own life.
Here’s what I’ve been reading and watching from that list this month:
- How To Be An Antiracist (Dr. Ibram X. Kendi): As Dr. Ibram writes, it is not enough to “not be racist.” To change our society, thinking, and community at a fundamental level, we must build a world that is anti-racist.
- 13th (Ava DuVernay & Netflix): We cannot have a conversation right now without talking about the issues of police brutality and accountability. This documentary is an in-depth exploration of the American justice system and the targeting and mistreatment of Black Americans.
- Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower (Dr. Brittney Cooper): The #MeToo movement did a lot to address sexism in our society. But there was a clear lack of diversity in the movement’s prevailing voices. This book challenges conventional feminism to be more open to Black women and activists.
What resources are you leaning on right now? I’d love to expand my list further.
“How can we do more?” It’s a question many of us are asking right now. Here are a few options to consider:
- Donate money. Donate to causes like the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Advancement Project, and Color of Change. So far Drifters have donated over $40,000 to 75 different organizations that support the Black community. The Drift Board has also donated $100,000 to Diversity. This organization is dedicated to bringing underrepresented talent to fast-growing tech and healthcare companies.
- Donate time. Call politicians to voice your discontent. Lend your skills through organizations like the Skillshare Initiative. Offer to hand out and distribute flyers and masks during protests – if you’re comfortable doing that. We can all contribute in some way. Find your way.
- Buy from Black-owned businesses. From restaurants to retail – identify the Black-owned businesses in your community. Find new products and resources outside your standard bubble. Share what you find with others. For example, the Drift office has been sharing some of their favorite Black-owned restaurants on Slack.
Why we must persist
It is easy to move on from the conversation in a once-a-month newsletter. But we cannot be silent. We cannot let time dull this message.
I stand alongside our Black Drifters and the Black community as we fight for their equality, respect, and human rights in this country.
I ask you to continue sharing this message of justice, equality, and humanity – today and always.
Thank you & stay safe.