Our commitment to tackling racism
Splendid is a people first business
We aim to ensure equal rights and opportunities for all colleagues no matter what gender, race or sexual orientation. We want to support a truly diverse and accessible culture within our business, our industry and, where possible, support causes in which we believe that seek to achieve this in wider society. This attitude also applies to our creative work and because we want our work to make a positive impact on the widest possible audience, we want to ensure that BAME voices and perspectives, along with other under-represented groups, are shaping that creativity. This, along with simply being human and fair, underlines our desire to recruit a diverse and representative workforce.
Black Lives Matter Every Day
Like the rest of the world we have all been horrified by recent events in the US but are acutely aware that this is not the first such incident and we worry that it will not be the last. Britain is not immune; people of colour are dying as the result of police brutality and racism here too. While we hope #Blackouttuesday will prove to be a significant moment in the advancement of BAME rights in the US and everywhere, we know it’s going to take more than one day of social media activism to effect lasting change. After consulting all staff and paying particular attention to BAME colleagues we chose not to participate in this hashtag but take some time to consider what we are actually going to do for the long term. I know that not everyone agreed with me on this, but we all agree that sharing a black square on Instagram for one day is just not enough. I have been doing a lot of soul searching and my conclusion by Tuesday was that I, as a parent, employer and lifelong black music lover, and despite donating and signing petitions, wasn’t yet doing enough to fight racism and I personally didn’t feel comfortable sharing what I felt, coming from me, was not yet a gesture with substance. I am glad that many of you took the personal choice to use the hashtag, and much more, and I believe you have been part of a great wave of youthful, social media-fuelled momentum which we hope will bring about that lasting change. But only if we use what influence we have to make lasting changes in our own sphere.
The focus of Splendid HR efforts once we return to a post-Covid business routine
Will be on addressing under-represented voices and anti-discrimination. The Taylor Bennett Foundation is an organisation that can help us create a pipeline of applications from young BAME graduates. We will also be looking for other organisations to help us achieve these aims. Any staff member involved in recruitment will be undergoing diversity and interview training to learn about and prevent unconscious bias.
In addition to the HR activities outlined above we will
- Continue to look for causes to support in the US where we can, such as the Grassroots Law Project
- Select a UK based organisation to become our chosen anti-racism partner (as we have the World Land Trust for environmental issues and Hackney Quest to create opportunities for disadvantaged local kids).
- Initiate a programme of education, led by the senior team, and starting with a Splendid Stories book club discussion of ‘Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race’, by Reni Eddo-Lodge.
A creative focus
We will ensure that BAME voices are represented at every stage of every creative process. This will be especially important at the insights and idea generation stages. In addition to the creative and feasibility reviews, we will add an inclusivity review to all creative work leaving Splendid. We will be looking for volunteers to be trained to do this review, seniority is not a consideration.
A cultural focus
The world and Britain in particular, has benefited from the influence of black culture and the cultures of other people of colour in our everyday lives, from the food we love, sports, fashion and the arts, and of course, music, a special Splendid passion. My personal ambition is that Splendid will find a way to support the advancement of BAME Culture in Britain as a means of creating opportunity and fighting racism. At this stage it’s an ambition though if anyone has any ideas, please get in touch.