Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at NerdPress

Black lives matter. Systemic, institutional, and economic racism and oppression must stop.

We welcome and support the momentum that has been built recently towards this goal. It’s not enough to be “tolerant” or “not racist,” everyone must actively work against racism, against bigotry, and against hate.

We have been listening, discussing (both internally and externally), and thinking deeply to develop a number of initiatives at NerdPress that we are implementing to bolster and sustain this change.

So, today, we are laying out some specific actions that we are taking. We’ve already taken some of these steps; others we will be implementing in the coming days and weeks. We hope this is a good start. If you have ideas, suggestions, or feedback, please leave a comment below or email andrew@nerdpress.net.

Donate

NerdPress has donated $1,000 to each of these organizations, and will continue to make contributions to these or similar organizations in the future.

Black Lives Matter, the national nonprofit organization whose mission is to eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes.

The Bail Project, a national nonprofit organization that pays bail for people in need, reuniting families and restoring the presumption of innocence. Because bail is returned at the end of a case, donations to The Bail Project can be recycled and reused to pay bail two to three times per year, maximizing the impact of every dollar.

Black Girls CODE, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower young women of color between the ages of 7–17 to embrace the current tech marketplace as builders and creators by introducing them to skills in computer programming and technology.

The Okra Project, a collective that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people by bringing home cooked, healthy, and culturally specific meals and resources to Black Trans People.

Create a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy

We’ve always included a diversity statement on our job listings, but we hadn’t yet documented that as a standalone company policy — until now!

In creating our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy, our goal was to go beyond a simple policy of “non-discrimination,” and to take a strong stand against racism, bigotry, and hatred. It is our intent to embed the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion deeply into our operations.

Require all employees and freelancers to follow and support our policy

We’re working on adding language in our contracts to ensure that all our employees and contractors are aligned with our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy. If they don’t agree with and support our policy, we won’t hesitate to part ways.

Work with vendors and outside service providers who also have strong policies

We will prioritize working with vendors who also have strong non-discrimination/anti-racist/equity policies. For those who do not already have those in place, will encourage them to develop them — and if they don’t, we’ll look for alternative providers.

Refuse to support websites or clients who are not aligned with our policy

Our services exist to help our clients achieve their goals, by supporting them with their websites. To that end, we will not work with or support websites or clients who promote racism, hate, bigotry, abuse, child pornography, illegal activities, or that defame, abuse, or threaten others. As part of those services, we are committed to ensuring our clients are welcomed into a community that supports them. We have updated our Terms and Conditions to include this policy.

Work to expand our team’s diversity

We genuinely believe that increasing our team’s diversity will broaden and enhance our perspectives and experience, and therefore the quality of service and support we provide to our clients. We will seek out ways to make our hiring process more equitable, including promoting future job openings on websites that are focused on creating opportunities for those marginalized as a result of race, culture, language, or gender (or other factors).

Be inclusive in our Core Values

We had been developing a set of Core Values for the company since last Fall and have now published them on our site. One of the values we have chosen is “Take Good Care.” Diversity, inclusion, equity, justice, and open-mindedness are all critical components of taking good care — of each other and of our community.

Increase representation on our website

Representation matters. The imagery that is currently on our website, including stock photography and testimonials from our clients, does not accurately represent the diversity of our current clients and those with whom we want to work. In the coming weeks, we will be reviewing and replacing imagery where appropriate, in order to more accurately represent the true diversity of our company and our clients.

Looking for free, high-quality stock photography of people of color for your own site? Check out Nappy and Eye for Ebony. (Our thanks to Jessica for this suggestion and these excellent resources.)

Demand the same from our experts and other referrals

When a client needs help with something that is outside the scope of what we do, we will recommend other experts. We will be reaching out to each person or company on our Expert Referrals page, to make sure they agree with our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion policies. If not, we will remove them from the page and no longer send them referrals — simple as that.

Diversify our expert referrals page

Similarly, we would love to promote more people of color on our Expert Referrals page. If you have worked with an expert whom you think would be a great person to include, please let us know! We’d love to meet them.

Keep listening, and keep improving

Another of our Core Values is “Keep Improving” – which implies that it’s a process of growth and learning. We recognize that the steps listed above are just the start, and we’ll continue to listen, to learn, to seek out other ideas, and to take action. We welcome your feedback and suggestions so that we may always Keep Improving.

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