The inhumane killing of George Floyd, and the many other Black lives taken by racism and police brutality, has enraged us. The Black Lives Matter protests all over the world have shaken us into action.
At Output, we’ve been guilty of thinking it’s enough to be ‘good’ people who are against racial inequality and injustice. But looking around, it’s clear there is a problem of systemic racism in the design industry. A problem that we’re part of.
We see this in the ethnicity of those in management and leadership positions, in the CVs that dominate our inbox, and the overwhelmingly White team across our studio. Clearly ‘enough’ isn’t enough, and we all have an active part to play in changing that.
We’re challenging ourselves to find ways of answering four key questions, with the goal of being actively anti-racist as individuals, and as an organisation:
How might we improve the diversity of the workforce in design?
How might we play a more active role in our community?
How might we make the practice of our design more diverse and meaningful?
How might we support the success of Black and Ethnic Minority-owned brands, and those fighting for social and racial justice?
These are early days, but we’re committing to make the answers an integral part of our working life from this moment on.
We’re starting this process by:
Reading and sharing resources on the history of Black oppression, the ongoing culture of White supremacy, and ways to be an ally to BAME people
Signing up the team for training to understand our unconscious biases
Reviewing our hiring policies, freelance lists and collaborator selection
Allocating time every month for each team member to spend on pro-bono work or mentoring
Planning useful guides and tools for students and those early in their design career, so we can share our knowledge and start to democratise the landscape.
We hope these actions will inspire others to do something similar. This only works if we all work together, and we can’t be the only ones realising we need to do more.
By making this public, we can be held to account. We want our peers, clients and future employees to follow our journey and share our progress.
The team have supported these organisations through individual and recurring donations. Please look them up.