38 days ago
On 25 May, George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, was killed by a Police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota, who has since been charged with second-degree murder. Three other officers were sacked as a result, and all face criminal charges.
Pictured: Minneapolis resident George Floyd
Understanding that the pain of this event stretches beyond that community, and beyond the United States of America, our employee network for racial equality – Cultures & Origins – has worked to send a message from its executive co-sponsors, Phil Smith (Managing Director, Service Operations) and Chris John (CEO, Global Events).
The message reads:
"Events in the United States surrounding the killing of George Floyd by a Police officer. and the understandable outrage this has caused, have brought into sharp focus the injustices in society.
"Our thoughts go out to the family and friends of George Floyd and all those affected by recent tragedies. However, when it comes to racial equality, thoughts are simply not enough. As a region, we have much more to do – we must always stand up for individual rights and fight to create a workforce that is, at all levels, representative of the communities we serve.
"For those of us lucky enough to have been born with privileges, sometimes taken for granted, it can be hard to empathise with and appreciate the plight of the oppressed.
"At Sodexo, we are committed to rooting out prejudice at all levels, and we call on you to re-double your efforts to condemn racism wherever you see it. Make yourself a positive force for change.
"Be strong, stand up and make sure your voice is heard."
This week, co-chairs of the Cultures & Origins network, Harpreet Cheema (Head of Promotions & Digital, Service Operations) and Ryan Candy (Strategic Talent Acquisition Business Partner) have shared personal accounts of the impact of racism, and what we have to do to move the dial. There's also a guide for having positive and productive conversations around race, produced by our global partners, Catalyst. Why not use this as a conversation starter during team meetings this week?
On 17 June, Harpreet and Ryan will host a virtual live event: small actions, big impact - standing up against racism. The co-chairs will be discussing their own experiences and reflections, and sharing the work Sodexo is doing as an organisation. The audience will have the opportunity to ask questions. Colleagues can register to attend here.
If you are not yet a member of the network, you can join here. Remember, you can look after your emotional wellbeing with our employee assistance programme, Sodexo Supports Me.
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