The Evolution of DEIB and Calling Corporate America to Action - A Roundtable Discussion (Video)

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Continuing our interview series honoring Hispanic Heritage Month, we are joined by Holly Lindvall, Chief Human Resources Officer, Locality; and Dr. Jorge Alcaraz, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Starcom, with the conversation moderated by Juan Ayala, contributor at MediaVillage.

In recent years, DEIB (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging) went from an afterthought to an absolute priority in the workplace for the majority of corporate America. The social unrest and steady rise of the Black Lives Matter movement and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic led company leaders to make sure their staff felt not just seen and heard, but supported and uplifted. I noticed about a year or two into the pandemic that DEIB eventually became DEI, dropping Belonging from the priority list, which I felt was the most important aspect of DEIB. What good was diversity and inclusion of you didn't feel like you belonged or felt undervalued and not appreciated. Our panelists had much to say about this.

"I noted the 'B' dropping in belonging and one of the things I often talk about is that in order to achieve belonging as a result, experience and feeling, you have to center equity," explained Dr. Alcaraz. "What is it that we're doing to acknowledge the inequities that exist in the various identities that exist? You have to question what does feeling valued look like, and how does that differ across racial groups, ethnic groups and other identities?"

"I think the most glaring area for opportunity was around the things we offer to employees in the form of benefits," added Lindvall. "We currently don't have transgender-affirming healthcare. We don't have early intervention for families with neurodivergent children. We weren't using pronouns on our [email] signature lines. In addition to talking about what our workplace culture looks like, there are business opportunities on the backend to go one step further to make that statement."

You can watch the full conversation above.

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