We are heartbroken. We are angry. We are upset. North Highland pledges to listen, learn and act, as shared in an employee message from Managing Director & President Alex Bombeck, highlights of which we are sharing below.
A Message from the Desk of Alex Bombeck, North Highland Managing Director & President
It’s been heartbreaking to hear the stories some of our North Highland colleagues have shared over the past two weeks about what it means to be a person of color in the United States. Of encountering racism while shopping, or driving, or working in an office. It is atrocious that people of color still endure injustice, racism or exclusion in the year 2020. But sadly, it’s all too real. The injustice, oppression and inequality that led to the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and far too many others are not new. Systemic racism and injustice have been decades, generations, hundreds of years in the making, and they are pervasive. What can we – as individuals and as a firm – do about it? I’m not here to dispense easy answers. I do not feel this injustice will be solved quickly. But I do believe that, if we are all willing to listen and act, we can work together and make progress towards what should be global ideals of equality and justice for all. There are no bystanders to this type of injustice, which means those of us who are not people of color are called to be allies. That can take many forms: listening more than speaking, or giving your time, talent, and resources to organizations doing front-line work in this area. Being an ally means committing to the work. It’s about doing, not just knowing. Learning needs to come in the form of action.
America has missed an untold number of opportunities to listen to leaders in our communities who have brought a voice to the need for social justice. We need to act, now. And we cannot let another moment go by without meaningful change that brings us closer to the promise of justice for all.
We are looking forward to listening to what North Highlanders and our clients are saying, to learning and helping our firm continue its commitment to upholding a culture where inclusion and diversity are the priority every day….
… As we work for lasting change, we must start by truly seeing – and hearing – each other and driving forward into a program of action. Thank you to the Inclusion & Diversity Committee, to our local I&D Champions and to our Employee Resource Groups – the Black Employee Network, PRIDE Alliance, Women in North Highland, Veterans at North Highland and London BAME (Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic community) – for representing the interests of employees so well. Challenges like this clearly aren't confined by borders. We are one firm, pulling together in solidarity.
…. I’m deeply committed to take part in this journey with all of you.