Goldman Sachs, Starbucks and a variety of other organizations in the US on Tuesday announced a collaborative effort aimed at narrowing the racial wealth gap between white and black Americans.
The initiative, called NinetyToZero, also includes the American Civil Liberties Union, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and the Robin Hood Foundation as sponsors.
“A handful of people got together and said, ‘We have a coordinated problem that we have to deal with, and the only way we’re going to deal with it is a coordinated solution,'” said Robin Hood CEO Wes Moore. , on CNBC. “Squawk Box”.
“The problem we are trying to solve is the fact that there is this 10 to 1 racial wealth gap that we have with the United States between black families and white families,” added Moore, who is ready to resign from the organization. New York City-based anti-poverty nonprofit next month.
That 90% gap is where the NinetyToZero name comes from. The wealth disparity between black and white Americans has increased throughout American history as a result of exploitation, discrimination, and segregation.
Through the initiative, NinetyToZero partner organizations will set goals and track progress in a number of areas, such as hiring black employees, as well as spending and relationships with black-owned businesses. It also includes factoring efforts around inclusion in “executive responsibility,” according to a press release.
Goldman Sachs President and CEO David Solomon, who appeared alongside Moore in “Squawk Box,” emphasized the need for organizations to be held accountable.
“One of the reasons I signed this initiative with Wes and NinetyToZero is that I looked at the things that we were doing through our various programs and I said, ‘We’re doing a lot of this, but this gives us another set of metrics, another set. goals where we can use our capital and our resources to try to make a difference, ‘”said Solomon.
While Robin Hood is initially “incubating” NinetyToZero, it will eventually become independent from the nonprofit, according to the statement.
“The ability to meet any challenge became increasingly difficult – and frankly, impossible – if we don’t address the fact that this racial wealth gap continues to impede any form of growth or progress,” Moore said.
NinetyToZero is the latest corporate action from last year focused on addressing racial inequality in the U.S. Following George Floyd’s death in police custody last May, many companies announced financial investments in Black communities and organizations, as well as other internal efforts. , how to reform hiring practices.
Solomon said that shareholders and capital distributors have placed a greater emphasis on racial equality. “The reason for this is that I think people believe that diverse and inclusive organizations, and also progress on some of the issues that [Moore] stands out this morning: it drives additional economic production, which attracts everyone. “
Companies need to understand the role they can play in driving that progress, Moore added. “Whether you are talking about historical factors like the end of apartheid in South Africa, whether you are talking about the hanging of the name of football teams, corporate weight is important in these talks,” he said.
Other companies and organizations that have already joined NinetyToZero include Lord Abbett, Harvard University’s TH Chan School of Public Health, and McKinsey & Co.