Racism is Unacceptable In Our Company, Our Industry and Our Society

Written by: Sacha Labourey

3 min read

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Onward, together.

A message to our employees, our industry and beyond.

Racism is everywhere...and it’s important we acknowledge this with purposeful intent.

Every single day, it hides in pernicious attacks. Someone might be denied a well-deserved promotion or raise, or maybe doesn’t get invited to an event or gets racially profiled. When one incident occurs, we might try to give someone the benefit of the doubt but, over time, because of these constant microaggressions, we just know racial inequities are real. And anger builds up...

And, sometimes, we are witness to highly visible racist attacks. Innocent people die. And anger and frustration build up...

But these two scenarios are no different: there is no “casual” racism. It all comes from the same ugly place, the rejection of other human beings because of the color of their skin.

This anger is now erupting across the world and screams “enough!” Now is the time for all of us to step up and claim it loud and clear: racism is unacceptable and has no place in our society. We have the personal responsibility to fight it anywhere it shows up: at social gatherings, while participating in sports, at work. Every situation matters.

But we also have the corporate responsibility to fight it. And culture is not what you say, it is what you do. Effective immediately, CloudBees has doubled the time allotted to our employees under the #Bee-Giving program from one day to two days per year. That is two paid days to benefit their community in ways they find meaningful. By unifying our efforts as part of this program, we can do a lot to fight racism, together.

I’d strongly support all CloudBees employees to be an agent of change and say loud and clear that racism needs to stop. As such, if they want to show their support, they are entitled to paid time off to participate in peaceful demonstrations.

On Thursday, I am hosting a weekly internal watercooler session on this theme. Our watercooler sessions are a virtual chat around the “company watercooler.” Any employee can say anything that is on their mind about the topic of the week, or any other topic they wish. In preparation for the watercooler this week, I will be speaking with our Bees of color to gain a better perspective.I want all employees to join this session, be active and explicitly show their support to our team members who are the regular victims of racism. I want them to be vocal - we should never assume that being silent will implicitly be translated as being supportive. Just as our internal team needs to hear us, so does the broader external team.

On the watercooler, we will also have a moment of silence in a show of support for George Floyd and the senseless loss of his life, as well as in support of our Bees of color and their families.

As an organization, I’m convinced we are not perfect and that there are many things we could do to enable an even more inclusive and diverse work culture. We will be organizing working sessions with the objective to find additional practical ways to improve in this area. It has been a company commitment already, but we need to move it forward more quickly and decisively.

Onward, together,

Sacha
CEO and co-founder, CloudBees

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