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More and more individuals, communities, and companies are looking for ways to start the conversation about anti-racism. It’s a multi-faceted conversation, and one that might not be the easiest to begin. That’s why The Business Council of Westchester (BCW) is providing resources to help local businesses head in the right direction.
The BCW established an anti-racism task force back in June to address the issue of educating the business community about a number of different topics, such as unconscious bias, specific anti-racism initiatives, and fostering a diverse and equitable community.
“Our goal is to advance the conversation to end racism,” says Marsha Gordon, the President and CEO of The BCW. “We felt very strongly that we had to have actionable steps, not just statements.”
One of the initial steps was to look internally, and analyzing immediate steps The BCW can take to begin this conversation. The group created a partnership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as well as The Business Council of New York State on specific initiatives, such as the Equality of Opportunity Initiative. Here, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce compiled research to show the magnitude of opportunity gaps in six key areas, addressing issues that perpetuate broader inequalities in our society and hold back individuals and businesses from success and economic growth.
Another step The BCW took was to found an anti-racism resource center, which includes blogs and webinar links for local businesses. It developed a series of eight webinars, titled the Anti-Racism Educational Series, which includes programs on unconscious bias, how to be an inclusive leader, fostering inclusion in the workforce, coping with civil unrest, and even self-care.
“As the leading business organization in Westchester, we’re taking this very seriously, and we want to be a resource center for the business community to address these issues,” says Gordon.