Apple has announced a $100 million commitment in support of efforts to advance racial equity and justice in the United States and globally.
"The unfinished work of racial justice and equality call us all to account — now and always," said Apple CEO Tim Cook in a video announcing the tech giant's Racial Equity and Justice Initiative. "Beginning in the United States and expanding globally over time, the initiative will challenge the system barriers to opportunity and dignity that exist for communities of color and particularly for the Black community, with a special focus on issues of education, economic equality, and criminal justice reform."
To be led by Lisa Jackson — a former EPA administrator and Apple's vice president of environment, policy, and social initiatives — the effort will build on the company's support for historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), community colleges, STEM education, and underserved students and teachers and will look to forge new partnerships with organizations such as the Equal Justice Initiative. According to Cook, the initiative will encompass not only philanthropic projects but also targeted efforts aimed at elevating Black developers and entrepreneurs, boosting supply chain spending with Black-owned suppliers and professional services firms, and stepping up the hiring of and support for employees from underrepresented groups.
"Whether it's at Apple or anywhere else, the burden of change must not fall on those who are underrepresented," said Cook. "It falls heaviest on those in position of power, leadership, and influence to change structures for the greater good."