Facebook announces $200m for businesses owned by black people

Facebook today announced that it will commit $200m towards businesses owned by black people, the latest in a string of tech giants to announce such initiatives.
In a post, chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg revealed the plan, saying that the firm needed to take action.
She wrote; “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.
“We have shared words of support for our friends, colleagues, and communities. We need to take action as well.”
In recent days, Youtube, Google, and Apple have all committed to similar initiatives, promising equity support worth $100m, $175m, and $100m respectively.
Facebook will give $100m annually to suppliers such as marketing and construction firms owned by black people, as well as $75m in grants for businesses that serve the black community.
The final $25m will be given to black content creators, Sandberg said. 
She also said that the firm would commit to increasing representation of people from BAME backgrounds in its leadership positions by 30 per cent over the next five years.
According to the firm’s 2019 diversity report, only 3.8 per cent of Facebook’s employees are black, a figure that falls to 3.1 percent for leadership positions.
Facebook’s contribution comes after the firm came under fire from its own employees for not taking down a post from US president Donald Trump concerning Black Lives Matters protestors, which read if “When the looting starts, the shooting starts”.
Trump’s post, which referred to protests against the killing of George Floyd in police custody last month, was flagged by Twitter for “glorifying violence”.
Facebook has come under heavy criticism for the decision to leave the post up. Boss Mark Zuckerberg argued:
 “We should enable as much expression as possible unless it will cause an imminent risk of specific harms or dangers spelled out in clear policies.” 
The online publishing platform Medium announced Thursday that former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick would be joining its board of directors.
Medium also said in a statement they will partner with Kaepernick and his publishing company, Kaepernick Publishing, to add more content focused on race and civil rights issues.
Kaepernick said he is "excited" to "continue to elevate Black voices in the news and publishing industry," in a statement about the new partnership.
"I also look forward to creating new opportunities and avenues for Black writers and creators with my new role as a Board member," he added.
Medium said the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback will interview activists, athletes, and other leaders.
"We've been in talks with Colin for some time, and we are honored to be electing him to join our board," Medium CEO Ev Williams said in a statement.
"Colin's voice and actions have led the discussion on racial justice, and the world is finally catching up to him. He's an incisive, independent thinker, whose integrity as an activist and athlete has inspired so many," Williams added. "We've enjoyed collaborating with Colin so far, and look forward to tapping into his perspective, as a partner and leader."
Kaepernick ignited a firestorm when he began kneeling before games in 2016 to protest police brutality. The outrage rose all the way to the White House, where he was condemned by the president. The NFL apologized for its handling of the issue last week in the wake of nationwide protests over the death of George Floyd.
The announcement comes amid rising calls for the need for diversity in corporate boardrooms, especially in the tech sector.
Earlier this month, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian resigned from his company's board and asked to be replaced by a black candidate. Reddit listened, selecting Michael Seibel for the role.
"It is long overdue to do the right thing. I'm doing this for me, for my family, and for my country," Ohanian wrote on Twitter, announcing his resignation. "I'm saying this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks: 'What did you do?'"
In the same Twitter post, he announced a $1 million donation to Kaepernick's Know Your Rights Camp initiative.
Kaepernick, who hasn't played in the NFL for three seasons, remains unsigned.
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