Thank you to everyone who asked us to share more about the specific actions we are taking to fight racism and police violence. We are grateful to have a community that is so engaged and willing to hear more.
We are experts at developing complete nutrition products and getting them to people who want them. But we want to do more. We are learning how to use our expertise and business model better to promote social justice and how to overlay racial equity in everything we do.
We are experts in food distribution, and we want to use this expertise to support the movement. This week, we have expanded on our long-standing commitment to providing meals to marginalized communities both in Los Angeles and beyond. We have donated additional products to Feeding America (National Hunger Relief Organization) food banks as well as The Midnight Mission (social service organization providing meals, housing and support for homeless residents of Skid Row in Los Angeles). We understand this doesn’t fix a broken system, but as a food company, we believe that ensuring everyone has access to the nutrition they need is imperative.
This week we have begun to review our entire supply chain and network of business partners to see what percentage of our suppliers, shippers and producers share our values. We will use this data to set targets for more diverse partnerships in the future.
We have been active members of LA’s PledgeLA initiative (a partnership between the Annenberg Foundation and the LA City Mayor’s office explicitly focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the LA tech sector) since its inception. As the first company to sign the pledge, we hold an advisory board position. Over the last week, we have been working with other PledgeLA companies and leaders to develop best practices for addressing inequity in hiring, retaining and promoting Black employees. There is no one-size-fits-all solution, but the work we are doing with PledgeLA will not only guide our staffing practices, but will also inform hundreds of other tech companies.
Lastly, we have opened conversations with local leaders and elected officials about what exactly they are doing to fight racism and police violence. This includes conversations with staff from the Mayor’s office as well as getting up to speed on what policies we should press for locally, in the state and across the country.
As we dig into a variety of policy recommendations, we would love to hear about what policy change you support, what legislative action you are taking and how you are getting involved with your local leaders so we can also learn from you. Please share your ideas and involvement by emailing our Social Impact and #SoylentForGood teams.
We hope you continue with us on this path of learning and unlearning, supporting Black communities with your current strengths while understanding your growth opportunities, and getting up to speed on policies that we can all champion together. As promised, we will continue to share resources and provide updates on what we are doing to create a more just and equitable society.
In the meantime, check out this list of other ways you can get involved today.