Monthly Archives :

June 2020

Members Speak Out About Racism in Boston and What Change Looks Like

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Priscilla Douglas says, “It is time to end the illusion that people can lift themselves up by their bootstraps or move easily up an economic ladder just by working hard” and talks about closing the wage gap for the working poor in the Boston Business Journal: https://www.bizjournals.com/boston/news/2020/06/08/op-ed-close-the-wage-gap.html

 

Also in the Boston Business Journal, and the Boston Globe, Colette Phillips talked about her experiences with racism in Boston and how to create an inclusive economy in Massachusetts, saying, “We cannot continue down this road without change.” Read more here: https://www.bizjournals.com/boston/news/2020/06/08/colette-phillips-on-racism-in-boston.html
https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/06/08/opinion/how-create-an-inclusive-economy-massachusetts/

Carol Fulp: Committed to creating a more diverse and inclusive workforce

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Carol Fulp is the Founder and CEO of FulpDiversity LLC, where she engages with CEOs to advance diversity and inclusion within their organizations. She previously served as President & CEO of The Partnership Inc., the nationally recognized professional services firm that assists corporations in attracting, developing, and retaining executives and professionals of color. She is also the author of Success Through Diversity: Why The Most Inclusive Companies Will Win.

Given Fulp’s leadership in business and public service, President Obama appointed Fulp as a Representative of the United States of America to the 65th Session of the United Nations General Assembly. She also serves on the Eastern Bank Board of Trustees, American Student Assistance Corporation Board of Directors, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Board of Trustees, and the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation Board of Directors.

 

Paying It Forward

 

Carol has been engaged in diversity and inclusion for her entire life. When she was a child she marched on Washington with her parents. As a result of the Civil Rights movement, she saw doors open in education, industries, and neighborhoods that were previously closed to blacks. Yet she is so cognizant of the systematic racial discrimination that still exists today as evidenced by police brutality, the disproportionate rate of COVID-19, unemployment, the staggering wealth gap, and more. As such it is important for her to continue to work towards equity and to partner with others of color and women who seek a just and equitable society.

 

You Cannot Be A Leader In Business Unless You Are A Leader In the Community

 

Carol’s family comes from the Virgin Islands. She truly valued the mentorship of her Aunt Gertrude, who was an incredible businesswoman and community leader. Her aunt taught Carol that you cannot be a leader in business unless you are a leader in the community. Carol took these words to heart in her career and focused on corporate philanthropy, corporate responsibility, marketing, and human resources. And she always ensured business executives in the corporations where she worked, became fully engaged in the community.

 

The World Is Primarily Black, Brown, and Yellow

 

Her appointment by President Obama as the US Representative to the 65th General Assembly was a life-changing experience. This was a post held by Eleanor Roosevelt as well as  Coretta Scott King. She found working with the ambassadors around the globe on peace and equity transformational.

 

When Carol and her husband walked through the doors of the USUN to be sworn into her post, she viewed a significant photo display on the glistening walls. She saw the large photograph of President Obama, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice. She stopped, she stared and she cried.

 

For her, these portraits of the United States government’s highest officials reflected the rich diversity of America in ethnicity, gender, and age. She sees that rich diversity reflected in those marching today calling to end racism and calling for America to live up to its full potential.

 

And at the United Nations General Assembly, as Carol stood at the iconic podium delivering a speech, she looked out at the sea of ambassadors from around the globe. The visceral view of the faces of 173 ambassadors was profound. They reflected that the majority of the world was primarily black and brown and yellow.  Reinforcing this fact, was that 25% of the UN Member States represented Africa.

 

Can You Afford to Win the Race, If You Are Only Running On One Leg?

 

And it was during a lunch with the Ambassador from Nigeria that Carol took away a key statement on diversity. As they discussed the subject, the Ambassador stated, “You have to think of it this way: “Can you afford to win the race, if you are only running on one leg?” In his view, if you are only hiring one type of person, you are handicapping yourself. You are missing out on at least half the talent available to you. And you won’t be able to win the race. Others who are hiring the best talent of all kinds are bound to win.

 

Moved by the experiences of the United Nations, when Carol returned to Boston, she wanted to work to help Boston be more reflective of the United Nations, this is what led her to The Partnership, Inc. For nearly 35 years, the organization has developed more than 5000 individuals of color. It has helped multi-cultural advance in their organizations as helped position them to lead Boston’s community. At The Partnership, Carol increased programming, funding and it’s geographic reach.

 

As she concluded seven years with The Partnership, she began writing her book, Success Through Diversity: Why the Most Inclusive Companies Will Win. The book focuses on the advantages that diversity brings organizations and has been praised by Publishers Weekly and Booklist.

 

She now consults with CEOs across the country and provides diversity forums based on the book. In these times of racial unrest, she feels it is important that businesses listen to those who have been marginalized throughout their lives. It is an important time to understand the unconscious biases that exist in everyone. Now more than ever, it is important to operate equitably and objectively to create organizational cultures to attract and retain the best talent of all kinds. This is the only way we can succeed in this new era we are embarking on.

Wage Equity Now: Closing the raw wage gap by 2030

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Over the past few months, Megan Costello and the leadership of the Massachusetts Women’s Forum have continued to make progress on our big idea: closing the raw wage gap by 2030 by asking companies to publicly report their overall wage gaps by gender and race.

 

Some of the biggest updates include our work with Judy Habib’s team at KHJ Brand Activation. KHJ helped to create a name, vision, and a logo for this project. We’ve also recruited over 15 coalition partners including but not limited to: YWBoston, Amplify Latinx, The Boston Club, The Commonwealth Institute, Center for Women and Enterprise, the Boston Women’s Workforce Council and many more. These partners are critical to the success of this project. They are helping to recruit businesses and offering their area of expertise — solutions for how organizations can close their gaps.

 

This is already happening in several other countries.

 

We are not starting from ground zero. It is currently the law in the United Kingdom for companies with over 250 employees to publicly report their data. We have spoken to them about their model and process to publicly collect this data. This was originally voluntary but shortly after the UK Parliament passed a law mandating companies with over 250 employees to report.

 

Creating a beta group. We need your help.

 

What we are doing now is recruiting a group of Massachusetts employers and asking them to do the following: run their numbers to discover your overall raw wage gaps and meet with us to discuss our plan and potentially engage with us on this project. We are not asking for a commitment to public reporting for this beta group, but rather this will be our learning group. To sign up to be part of our beta test group and to learn more you can click here.

 

The RAW Wage Gap?

 

It is important to note that the raw wage gap is not equal pay for equal work. It is the percent difference in the average pay for women and men. It is important for us to also understand how this data breaks down by race, we know the barriers for women of color are even greater, so we will be asking for the following information from the beta group:

  • Mean male total compensation
  • Mean female total compensation
  • Mean total compensation for men of color
  • Mean total compensation for women of color

 

We recognize that knowing these numbers does not mean that we can close these gaps overnight, but it is important to know this information, be transparent about the numbers, and be intentional about closing the gaps. All organizations are different and gaps exist for a variety of reasons so the plan for closing them will be case-specific. The beta group will be providing feedback on what questions we are asking that will help us ultimately decide what questions we ask for public reporting. Our goal is to keep the reporting simple, but also capture important data to inform employers about their gaps and where they should focus to close them.

 

If you or your employer are interested in participating in our beta test group please fill out this form.  As a reminder, this is our beta group and does not mean that you are committing to public reporting, but rather it means you’re interested in engaging in this project and learning more.

We stand against racism. We stand with those protesting its ravages.

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Black Lives Matter. The Massachusetts Women’s Forum stands against racism and with those protesting its ravages past, present, and future.  Not just active hate but also passive contempt.  As women leaders, mothers, daughters, and agents of change, we are united by a shared passion for individually and collectively shaping the world according to American values – equality and justice for all.  We are in deep mourning for George Floyd, senselessly killed at the hands of police, those pledged to protect him, protect all of us no matter the color of our skin. We are in deep mourning for Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Christian Cooper, for every victim of racism over the last four centuries.

 

We stand for those lost, those who survived, and those who fear every day because of racism.  We call for police reform.  We demand that our police and institutions, our leaders and citizens, our society’s laws and norms, renounce racism and stop the killing of our black and brown family.

 

Today is not about one moment in time.  Our nation must face the history of dehumanization and forced submission and the lived experience of black families.  Each of us must look within, ask why, and find our personal role forward. It is we who change our society, we who sound the alarm, we who build our institutions, we who make our law, and we who keep watch.

 

The Massachusetts Women’s Forum acknowledges that in our everyday actions we must use our power and platform to listen, question, educate, unite, and act.  We commit to advocate for equity, justice, and change.  We pledge to bind together and work to lead our beloved United States of America to live up to its hallowed principles, universal values, and just laws.

 

We stand with those who shout and whisper, scream and cry, for justice: in daily life, in protest, in chambers of government, in business rooms, in classrooms, and in the voting booth.