March 17, 2016
Intel’s CEO Takes a Bold Stand to Address the Racial Wealth Gap
As Silicon Valley continues to come under fire for its lack of diversity, one tech CEO is taking a bold approach to ensure his company is providing equal opportunity and treatment to all employees.
Last year, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich announced a $300 million initiative to increase representation of women and people of color in tech. Now, Krzanich is going back to the drawing board to ensure that all employees within his company are paid fairly.
Taking a deep look at how the company pays underrepresented minorities–including Hispanics, African Americans and Native Americans–Intel will conduct an audit across its roughly 50,000 U.S. employee base to ensure they’re compensating minorities fairly in relation to white and Asian-American employees.
“We’re scared to death,” The Huffington Post reports Krzanich saying at an event on equality last month in Beverly Hills, California, while admitting that he is committed to fixing whatever disparities the data shows.
According to data from Pew Research Center, wealth inequality in the U.S. has widened since the end of the Great Recession with white households making 13 times the median wealth of black households in 2013, compared to eight times the wealth in 2010. When it comes to gender, while the pay gap has narrowed to 78 cents for every dollar a man makes, the narrowing has stopped and remained between 76 cents and 78 cents since 2001.
Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson also spoke at the equality event and made note of the CEOs value in addressing company disparities.
“The CEO sets the tone for the company. Period,” Tyson said, while adding insight to his personal experience with discrimination.
“I know what it feels like when you discover that you’re doing the same job as someone else who happens to be a white man,” he added.Â “It is a blow to your guts. It happened to me. I know what it tastes like. And on my watch no one will ever experience that.”
Intel plans to release their results at the end of the year in what many hope will inspire other companies to examine their own policies and practices that allow discrimination to exist.