“In Brazil, 56% of the population is composed of black people, but only 1% achieve an executive position, so it’s great for me to be representing them in my country”
Vânia Neves. CIO Brazil Pharma and Head of Innovation in GSK. Tech Executive winner of Globant Awards Women That Build edition 2020.
Black History Month is a time of year where communities recognize and celebrate the influence and contribution of African-Americans in creating their cultures. It is a time to make visible the achievements, historical and current, that contribute to creating more just and equal societies, where people of color have the same opportunities as others, in both the workplace and in society as a whole.
2020 has been an especially challenging year in the fight against racism and inequality: instances of racial violence, such as the death of George Floyd, are on the rise and the Covid-19 epidemic has disproportionately impacted the Black community.
According to recent research, “the COVID-19 crisis could set women back half a decade”. Black mothers are shouldering heavier burdens than most: they are twice as likely to be responsible for all childcare and housework than white mothers. Black women are also almost twice as likely as women overall to say that they can’t bring their whole selves to work and more than 1.5 times as likely to say they don’t have strong allies. As a result, Black women feel more excluded at work and are less likely to say they can bring their whole selves to work.
At Globant, we believe that companies must play an active role in the fight to create a more equitable and inclusive society. Our commitment to diversity is founded on policies and practices that support employees of all races, eliminating unconscious biases in hiring and promotions, fostering the professional growth of women in the IT industry, and providing spaces to think over and debate stereotypes, among other meaningful diversity and inclusion initiatives.
On this Black History Month, we have organized some activities addressed to our US Glober community with the aim of raising awareness about race and recognizing the contributions of individuals with African and Caribbean heritage. Some of these activities are:
- During the last week of February, US Globers will be invited to a session with Carmen Sidbury, Senior Director of Research and Development at National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, from NACME regarding Black History Month and will share this year’s theme of “The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity.”
- A shared communication about the history of Black History Month as a way to remember and give tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve civil rights.
“The precursor to Black History Month was created in 1926 in the United States, when Carter G. Woodson sent out a press release to mark the second week of February as Black History Week. He is known as the “Father of Black History.” February was chosen in the US as Black History Month because it coincides with the births of former President Abraham Lincoln (born February 12, 1809) who issued the Emancipation Proclamation, and Frederick Douglass (birthday commemorated on February 14, 1818). Douglass escaped slavery and became a key social activist and was also a supporter of women’s rights. Both Lincoln and Douglass played a significant role in helping to end slavery.
Woodson sought to both honor the inestimable legacy of Lincoln and Douglass and to expand an already existing celebration of the Black past, to include not only the accomplishments of these two great individuals but also the history and achievements of Black people in general. The event was expanded in 1970, and since 1976, every US president has officially designated February as Black History Month in the US.”
- We have encouraged our Globers to support local black-owned businesses and donate to well regarded nonprofit organizations. For this purpose, we have shared resources that allow us to search black-owned businesses (Support Black Owned) and a directory of volunteering at nonprofits that defend civil rights, protect legal rights, and promote tolerance and understanding.
- Globant is committed to build a world in which everyone has a voice and everyone is heard. As a way of recognizing Black people who have made an impact, we motivated Globers to share names and descriptions of Black people who have inspired them professionally and personally.
- In February we celebrated the incorporation of Fernando Matzkin, Chief Business Officer of Globant in North America, as a member of the NACME Board, reaffirming Globant’s strong commitment to education and job placement of racial minorities through collaboration with the Association’s different initiatives and working together with other executives of large corporations with a genuine and common concern about diversity and inclusion within and outside their organizations. NACME (The National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering) is an organization that fights racism through education.
In the context of Black History Month, Globant entered into a collaboration agreement that will allow the company to participate in programs to create opportunities for candidates of science and computational systems internships; train young people from vulnerable situations in IT to help them join the workforce; and find solutions together to ensure both the quality of education and a sustainable future for all through technology.
This Black History Month, we also want to share our global commitment towards equality in the technology industry. In 2020 we launched the Globant Awards – Women That Build Edition, to recognize women who are leading the change the world needs. Vânia Neves, CIO Brazil Pharma and Head of Innovation in GSK, was chosen as the global winner of the Tech Executive category and has proven to be a great inspiration in the black community. Get to know her story, from humble origins to a c-level position in Brazil.
Diversity and inclusion are key to Globant’s business: they encourage innovation and bring us closer to our customers and the communities with which we work. We have a profound responsibility for the care and empowerment of this spirit, thus creating a work environment where every Glober feels included and valued. To know more, visit Be kind to your peers and our career section.