Bank of America Commits $1 Billion To Help Combat Racial Inequality
Bank of America has committed $1 billion to support black communities in a bid to fight against racial inequality.
The bank, which is the second largest in the US, announced the donation on Tuesday, June 2, confirming the cash will go towards job training, housing aid, supporting small businesses, employee recruitment and the expansion of health services such as vaccination clinics, over the next four years.
It comes as protests rage on across the US and in other parts of the world in response to the death of 46-year-old George Floyd, who died after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck during his arrest, while the country also deals with the economic fallout of the current health crisis.
Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan said in a press release:
Underlying economic and social disparities that exist have accelerated and intensified during the global pandemic.
The events of the past week have created a sense of true urgency that has arisen across our nation, particularly in view of the racial injustices we have seen in the communities where we work and live. We all need to do more.
The global health crisis has further highlighted racial disparities both in the US and elsewhere in the world, after it was reported that COVID-19 had disproportionately affected black communities; not just in terms of catching the virus, but the financial repercussions too.
You can do your bit to help by signing this petition and showing your support to the Black Lives Matter movement:
Conversations around these disparities have accelerated in recent weeks, following Floyd’s death, which prompted the resurgence of affirmative action against police brutality and racism in the form of protests, riots and a number of campaigns from high-profile global brands.
While the statement from Bank of America doesn’t directly address the protests, Moynihan has been vocal about the racial injustices within law enforcement in the states.
In a company letter, he wrote:
We share a deep sense of pain and loss from what we are seeing and experiencing right now in many of our local communities. Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and other fellow citizens have died in deeply tragic circumstances.
Many of you have shared with me your own expressions of anguish and anger about what has happened and how it is playing out across the country. I have listened and learned from all of you … All of these engagements have helped me better understand how these tragedies affect communities of colour, and the historical roots of those feelings.
As the backdrop for all of this, we reaffirm our values. We will not tolerate racism in any form. The racial injustice we see today, which many of you and your families experience all too often, is unacceptable to all of us. I thank teammates for the thoughtful notes shared with me and with my team, and for your leadership. We will take care of each other and we will work to make a difference.
Chauvin has since been arrested and charged with third degree murder and manslaughter for Floyd’s death, however the protests continue in the fight for real change and true equality.
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