Taking Action for Racial Equity and Social Justice

PayPal President & CEO, Dan Schulman, sent the following email to all PayPal employees discussing the company’s $530 million commitment to support Black communities throughout the U.S. See below for related quotes and facts from yesterday's internal employee meeting.

 

This has been a difficult and emotional time for all of us – and a painful and devastating period for our Black colleagues. The tragic and senseless deaths of so many Black people, including Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd in the U.S. – and the unacceptable intolerance displayed against Christian Cooper in New York’s Central Park – have cracked open a deep and painful history of systemic racism and violence that cannot be overlooked, ignored or dismissed. While these are just a handful of examples of what we’ve witnessed in the U.S., we know similar scenes are playing out in countries around the world as we continue to witness a rise in racism and xenophobia that has been exposed by the pressures of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The values all of us hold dear are under attack. These continued acts of racism and violence against Black people have sparked justified national outrage and created an urgent and renewed call for social justice. Let me be clear: I stand with our Black teammates and with the Black community, as does the entire PayPal community. We stand with you and we support you – and we must publicly declare that Black lives matter.

We must make it absolutely clear that we will not tolerate racism, hatred or discrimination of any kind. And we need to go further than that. It is not enough for us to condemn racism. We must be anti-racist. That means that we will take a united stand and do the necessary work to dismantle racism in all its forms. This fight for social justice, equality and inclusion continues now.

My recent conversations with members of our Amplify community, along with Diversity & Inclusion leaders and experts inside PayPal and out, have given me deeper perspective and have helped shape the actions we are taking as a company. As I just shared with you in our global All Hands, today we are announcing a set of internal and external initiatives that demonstrate our values, strengthen our commitment to Diversity & Inclusion within our PayPal community, and draw on our unique resources and capabilities to support Black businesses and communities during this critical juncture in history. I am pleased to share that all together, we will invest $530 million to advance this important work.

 

Investing in Diversity & Inclusion at PayPal

We are continuing to take a hard look across the company to understand how we can better support a culture of inclusion and belonging. With the attention and support of the entire Senior Leadership Team and our new Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion Kim Jenkins Manigault, we are taking meaningful steps towards building a working environment where all employees feel included, supported and safe in bringing their full selves to work:

  • We are immediately creating a $5 million pool to be shared among our Affinity groups to help drive internal programming and, importantly, increase their community engagement around the world.
  • We are also expanding our Diversity & Inclusion programs with an additional $10 million investment, refocusing efforts around university and high school recruiting, pro-bono engagements, and public advocacy initiatives. This builds on the $500,000 commitment we made last week to long-term social justice work – and we will set aside a portion of these funds to match employee giving and volunteer hours.
  • Finally, we are committing to reviewing our PayPal marketing materials and related collateral. Representation matters, and we will do a better job of featuring and celebrating the diversity of the PayPal community.

 

Supporting Black Businesses and Communities

As a company, we believe that financial health and security are essential to ensuring that everyone can live their lives with dignity and respect, and can pursue a better future for their families and communities. With this mission and our extraordinary employees and resources, PayPal is uniquely equipped to make a distinctive difference by addressing the systemic economic inequality and racial injustice that is afflicting the U.S. and many other countries across the globe.

The Black community has faced deep economic inequities for generations. The COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated this reality, leaving an outsized and devastating impact on Black-owned businesses and their communities. Supporting, sustaining and investing in Black-owned businesses is critical to close the racial wealth gap. To do our part, we are launching a comprehensive group of initiatives, with three separate, but interconnected, components:

  • First, due to COVID-19 and the current economic crisis, many Black-owned businesses have had to shut their doors or are on the edge of collapse. Traditional financing methods are not working and business owners need cash to survive. PayPal will provide $10 million in emergency grants to Black-owned businesses impacted by COVID-19 or the current racial justice crisis in the U.S. These grants will provide direct support to business owners to cover expenses related to stabilizing and reopening their businesses.
  • Second, we will provide $5 million to leading nonprofit community partners across the U.S. that support and empower Black-owned businesses and help provide on-the-ground support. Our local partners understand deeply the needs in their communities and these grants are intended to catalyze and further empower the necessary work they are doing to sustain Black-owned businesses. As part of our support, our employees will have the opportunity to volunteer to help mentor or support these businesses. Our commitment includes additional funding for the PayPal Gives Employee Matching Gifts program. The company will also match $2 for every $1 employees donate and $10 for every volunteer hour to racial and economic justice efforts in local communities up to $500,000. This commitment to the Black community is in addition to the $500,000 we donated to leading civil rights and social justice organizations to support economic equality, healing and reconciliation.
  • These first two initiatives are aimed at helping to address the immediate and ongoing support that Black-owned businesses need to sustain operations through the current environment. But today we are also making a significant long-term commitment to support underrepresented minority businesses and communities. The third and final component of our program is our commitment to create a $500 million economic opportunity fund to support and strengthen Black and underrepresented minority businesses and communities over the long term, and to help drive financial health, access, and inter-generational wealth creation. This initiative will bolster our treasury relationships with community banks and credit unions serving underrepresented minority communities and investing directly into Black and minority-led businesses and minority-focused investment funds.

This holistic program of initiatives is an ambitious but necessary commitment to do our part in what will be a long struggle ahead to fight systemic racism, discrimination and economic inequality. We will continue to speak out and stand on our values – and we will continue to invest in building just communities and economies. This is what we stand for as a company.

Thank you for joining in the hard work of pursuing social justice and affecting real change. I am proud to work with you every day.

 

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