Apple chief Tim Cook on Thursday said the tech giant is committing $100 million to the Racial Equity and Justice Initiative, a new program the company has set up to promote “racial justice and equality.” At the same time, its Silicon Valley neighbor, YouTube, also pledged $100 million to “amplify” black creators.
Cook, in a video accompanying his announcement on Twitter, said the initiative will “challenge systemic barriers to opportunity and dignity that exist for communities of color, and particularly for the black community.” The program will have a “special focus on issues of education, economic equality, and criminal justice reform,” Cook added.
The unfinished work of racial justice and equality call us all to account. Things must change, and Apple's committed to being a force for that change. Today, I'm proud to announce Apple’s Racial Equity and Justice Initiative, with a $100 million commitment. pic.twitter.com/AoYafq2xlp
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) June 11, 2020
YouTube chief Susan Wojcicki, meanwhile, said its $100 million commitment will go towards creating new original programming from black creators and artists.
“We’re committed to doing better as a platform to center and amplify Black voices and perspectives,” Wojcicki said in a blog post on the funding.
Both Apple and Alphabet-owned YouTube’s decisions come a few weeks after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Several tech and media companies have donated to social justice causes recently, including Disney, which pledged $5 million to nonprofit groups, including the NAACP.
“Whether it is at Apple or anywhere in society, the burden of change must not fall on those who are underrepresented,” Cook said on Thursday. “It falls heaviest on those in positions of power, leadership, and influence to change structures for the greater good.