Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook speaks onstage during ‘Putting a Best Facebook Forward’ at Vanity Fair’s 6th Annual New Establishment Summit.
Matt Winkelmeyer | Getty Images
Facebook on Thursday announced it will commit $200 million to Black-owned businesses and organizations.
“The past few weeks have compelled us to confront the reality of violence and injustice which members of the Black community face on a daily basis,” Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg wrote in a post announcing the company’s initiative. “We have shared words of support for our friends, colleagues and communities. We need to take action as well.”
Out of the $200 million, $25 million will go to support Black content creators, $75 million will go to cash grants and ad credits for Black-owned businesses and non-profits that serve the Black community and $100 million will be spent annually on Black-owned suppliers like marketing agencies and construction companies, Sandberg said.
Facebook will also commit to increase the representation of people of color in the company’s leadership positions by 30%, including 30% more Black people, over the next five years, Sandberg said.
Currently, 3.8% of the company’s employees are Black, and only 3.1% of the company’s senior leadership is Black, according to the 2019 Facebook diversity report.
Additionally, Facebook is adding a new section to its app called Lift Black Voices that spotlights stories from Black people and includes education resources, Sandberg said.
“This is just the start of how we plan to help in this fight,” she said. “We’ll continue to listen and take action to support the long-term success of the Black community.”
Facebook’s contribution comes after the company was criticized by its own employees and business partners for not removing or moderating a post by Trump regarding Black Lives Matter protesters that said “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.” Facebook employees who protested the decision argued that the post from Trump violates Facebook’s community standards, which prohibit language that incites serious violence.