Matchesfashion creates Black Employees Forum as BLM movement drives change
Matchesfashion has announced a series of measures to make the business more inclusive amid global outrage following the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor that have also pushed the issue of diversity higher up fashion's priority list.
In a public statement, CEO Ajay Kavan said the British luxury retailer has consulted with a number of black colleagues to hear their experiences, feedback and suggestions on how to raise its accountability.
Among other initiatives, Matchesfashion said it will create a Black Employees Forum that will “enable us to continue to consult with our communities and work with them to put into action a racial equality learning programme across the business”.
The fashion destination has also committed to showcasing more designers from minority groups and will publish an annual breakdown of its designers by ethnic backgrounds. The first of these reports will be released in August.
“Designers from minority backgrounds have been under-represented in the fashion industry for decades so righting this wrong won’t happen overnight, but we can and will do more to address the imbalance,” Kavan explained.
Finally, the company said it will work harder to get “better representation of different communities at every level in our business”. This includes setting new goals and measures of progress, as well as an annual breakdown of colleagues at different levels of seniority by ethnic background.
While many fashion brands have been quick to show their support for Black Lives Matter on social media, only a handful have announced specific plans to further the movement’s agenda beyond making donations.
Rihanna’s lingerie brand Savage x Fenty has donated funds to BLM Greater NY and The Bail Project, London-based skate brand Palace pledged $1 million to BLM-related causes and Nike said it will donate $40 million to support the black community.
Meanwhile, Reebok announced on Monday it has cut ties with CrossFit following controversial comments made by the association's CEO Greg Glassman.
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