At the start of this month, Sundar Pichai said that Google wants to “develop initiatives and product ideas that support long-term solutions” that help the Black community. The CEO today detailed what Google will do internally and externally to achieve racial equity.
Listening to the personal accounts of members of our Black Advisory Leadership Group and our Black+ Googlers has only reinforced for me the reality our Black communities face: one where systemic racism permeates every aspect of life, from interactions with law enforcement, to access to housing and capital, to health care, education, and the workplace.
Within the company, Pichai laid out steps to “build sustainable equity for Google’s Black+ community.” All have timelines and measurable goals to ensure that progress is being achieved. The Google CEO believes that racial equity and inclusion will result in “more helpful products for our users and the world.”
- First, we’re working to improve Black+ representation at senior levels and committing to a goal to improve leadership representation of underrepresented groups by 30 percent by 2025.
- Second, we’ll do more to address representation challenges and focus on hiring, retention, and promotion at all levels.
- Third, we’re working to create a stronger sense of inclusion and belonging for Googlers in general and our Black+ community in particular.
- Fourth, we’ll establish a range of anti-racism educational programs that are global in view and able to scale to all Googlers.
- Fifth, we’re focused on better supporting the mental and physical health and well-being of our Black+ community.
Pichai says that his call for ideas on how to help led to over 500 suggestions from Googlers around the world. Some have already been rolled out — including Assistant’s response to Black Lives Matter, while a product task force will work to prioritize and implement the rest. One of those ideas is a “Black-owned” attribute for businesses in Google Maps/Search. Meanwhile, Google will also strengthen “policies against hate and harassment” on its platforms.
Externally, the company announced also an over $175 million “economic opportunity package” for Black business owners, startup founders, job seekers, and developers. This includes:
$10 million+ to help improve the Black community’s access to education, equipment and economic opportunities in our developer ecosystem, and increase equity, representation and inclusion across our developer platforms, including Android, Chrome, Flutter, Firebase, Google Play and more.
Another $3 million will go towards education, while Google will continue supporting racial justice organizations:
We’re announcing the next round of grants—at $1 million each—to the Leadership Conference Education Fund, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund’s Policing Reform Campaign and the Movement for Black Lives.
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