Everyone’s favourite streaming service just got a whole lot better.
The tech giant and production company has been making major moves in prioritizing BIPOC voices in recent years. With documentaries such as 13TH, and original TV shows and movies such as Dear White People, Never Have I Ever and Hollywood, Netflix has been leading the pack when it comes to diversity, inclusivity and education in visual content.
And they’re not stopping there.
In a recent post on the company’s Media Centre, Netflix announced that it will be making a “commitment to racial equality… We are turning understanding into action,” by allocating two percent of the company’s cash holdings, “initially up to $100 million [USD] into financial institutions and [organisations] that directly support Black communities in the US.”
So, what does this actually mean?
As explained by Treasury Director, Shannon Alwyn and Talent Acquisition Director Aaron Mitchell, this redirection of cash will contribute to “building economic opportunity for Black communities.”
“According to the [Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation], banks that are Black-owned or led represent a mere one percent of America’s commercial banking assets. This is one factor contributing to 19 percent of Black families having either negative wealth or no assets at all – more than double the rate of White households – according to the U.S Federal Reserve.”
Of the initial $100 million commitment, Netflix has said “We believe bringing more capital to these communities can make a meaningful difference for the people and businesses in them, helping more families buy their first home or save for college, and more small businesses get started or grow.”
“The major banks, where big multinational companies including ours keep most of their money are also focusing more on improving equity, but not at the grassroots level these Black-led institutions can and do. So we wanted to redirect some of our cash specifically towards these communities, and hope to inspire other large companies to do the same with their cash deposits.”
The initial contribution will be split, with $25 million moved to the Black Economic Development Initiative, a fund managed by non-profit, Local Initiatives Support Corporation – which focuses on developing underinvested communities. The remaining $10 million “will go to Hope Credit Union, in the form of a Transformational Deposit to fuel economic opportunity in the underserved communities across the Deep South.”
Here’s hoping other Fortune 500 companies follow suit with these changes.