Comcast chairman and CEO Brian Roberts unveiled a plan by the cable giant on Monday to invest $100 million over the next three years to combat racism and advance social justice and equality in addition to the commitments the company has made to thousands of organizations to help underrepresented communities.
Roberts outlined details of the plan in a letter to employees Monday, adding that Comcast EVP and chief diversity officer Craig Robinson will be spearheading the efforts along with the chairman himself on the corporate level and will coordinate with executives across its business units -- including Comcast, NBCUniversal and Sky -- to allocate resources and partner with national and local organizations to drive meaningful change.
“Each of our companies will create sustainable programs within their businesses and will be proactively soliciting ideas from employees so that we can build this effort together,” Roberts said in the letter, adding that more details will be shared in the weeks ahead.
The initiatives will be focused on several key areas:
Social Justice: Comcast will partner with and provide significant grants to organizations working to eradicate injustice and inequity. Organizations will include but not be limited to: the National Urban League, the Equal Justice Initiative, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the National Action Network and the Community Justice Action Fund.
Employees: Comcast will accelerate its efforts in diversity and inclusion, including advancement, hiring and training, and will educate employees across the company to better understand race-related issues, including Town Halls, speaker series and mandatory anti-racism and anti-bias training. Comcast also pledged to provide financial support to its Employee Resource Groups and invest in its diverse talent, providing them with visibility, opportunity and sponsorship, while continuing to strengthen our diversity recruiting strategy.
Awareness & Education: Comcast pledged to use its vast media resources behind highlighting Black voices and Black stories and educating its viewers on diverse and inclusive cultures, perspectives and experiences. NBC News will host a series of Town Halls, similar to their Can You Hear Us Now special and pledged the use of its X1, Flex, Peacock and Sky platforms to promote multicultural content.
In addition, Roberts said Comcast will deepen its commitment to narrowing the digital gap in lower-income communities, continuing with its Internet Essentials low-cost broadband service and increasing its commitment to provide digital skills training. Comcast also pledged to provide assistance to minority-owned small businesses that had to close up during the pandemic. For entrepreneurs of color, Comcast said it will create new LIFT Labs programs for Black founders, will invest in minority entrepreneurs via its Comcast Ventures program and will expand Catalyst program, aimed at investing in Black, Latinx and female businesses.
“I want to sincerely thank those of you who have reached out and courageously shared your experiences and fears,” Roberts said in the letter. "We look forward to hearing more of your insightful ideas for our path ahead to a better future. Together we are facing a painful yet powerful moment – one that presents us with a renewed opportunity to do better, and to create substantive and sustainable change."
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