As we prepare for the new year, I’m going to take it as an article of faith that the folks behind Cleveland Rising are preparing to gear up to fulfill the mission they took on a few months ago of making our city a more equitable and fair place to live, work and raise a family. Indeed, if our region’s population loss is to finally be staunched and vibrant young people are to be attracted to move in, it will take the sustained efforts of all of the dedicated young professionals that signed on to the challenge if success is to be attained.
One of the first things these young people could do is to hold on to some of the holiday greeting cards they received from companies and organizations if said cards feature photos of the employees. Then take a look at the cards again with an equity mindset and reinterpret what’s being presented.
As usual, I received numerous cards where a person of color is nowhere to be seen. It’s absolutely amazing that so many local companies with 20 or more employees think nothing of sending out proof of how lacking in diversity they happen to be. Indeed, I have to suspect that some of the folks who run these companies are rather proud of their lack of inclusion.
This is one of the serious challenges Cleveland Rising has to confront head-on if success is to be ultimately be achieved.