Steps Companies Must Take To Advance Racial Equity

Steps Companies Must Take To Advance Racial Equity

It’s a topic that’s in the forefront of the collective American consciousness at the moment. Racial equity, the idea of creating fair inclusion within society regardless of ethnicity or culture, is something that not only diversity and inclusion activists are pushing for, but Americans at large as well. Companies are not exempt from dealing with the issue either, and for those looking to make positive change, these are some of the ways in which they can further the cause within their own organizations.

Providing A Living Wage

Many of society’s ills stem from the fact that the national minimum wage hasn’t kept up with inflation. Large numbers of employees are criminally underpaid, which, in turn, makes them more likely to be impoverished and incapable of tending to necessities. As you might imagine, this circumstance disproportionately affects black workers, so correcting the issue is a stride in the step of equity.

Giving Employees A Voice

For many employees, there is no representation and no recourse for injustice. They don’t have access to lawyers for wrongful termination and have no say when it comes to employment policy decisions. Put the systems in place that will address the issue, such as diverse employee representation on the board.

Offering Adequate Health Care

Like the lack of fair pay, a lack of adequate health care protections puts minority workers in a disadvantaged position. On top of that, the large amounts that companies spend in trying to provide healthcare (that ends up being inadequate) takes money away from what they could be paying to employees in wages. It’s a disadvantage for all, and revamping healthcare to be more efficient could help save lives while also improving pay.

Offering More Sick And Paternity Leave

At present, new fathers and those hit with sudden illnesses are in a precarious position. The lack of robust paternity leave and minimal amounts of sick leave provided to most employees make getting sick or starting a family a gamble that most won’t want to take. Providing both provides not only a boon to families, who can use the leave to stay together during a critical time in a child’s life, but supports companies and communities by providing for happier, healthier residents.

Democratizing Employment Application

Lastly, there are many subtle ways in which traditional employment screening can overwhelmingly affect people of color. Checking for felony convictions, for instance, can unfairly exclude minorities, as can drug testing for certain substances that shouldn’t be required by law. What’s more, easing requirements for college degrees in jobs that don’t require higher education to perform will go a long way to creating greater racial equity within the workplace.

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