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The fashion community has responded to the death of George Floyd last week in Minneapolis at the hands of police officers in multiple ways: supporting social justice, helping community organizers in their fight against racial inequality and offering solidarity to the black community.
Floyd’s death has ignited a wave of widespread Black Lives Matter protests across the country and the world.
Below is a list of what some of the leading fashion companies are doing to support their black employees, learn more about systemic racism and recognize the losses of Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and all victims of racism in the U.S. and globally.
PVH Corp.” data-reactid=”26″>PVH Corp.
Beginning Monday, throughout the month of June, The PVH Foundation will match 100 percent of North America corporate associate charitable donations.
The company has also compiled resources to help educate itself about racism and bias and will be sharing it with its employees. This includes an Anti-Racism Resource Guide, Associate Check-in Guide, PVH U course offerings, videos, podcasts and articles.
Columbia Sportswear” data-reactid=”30″>Columbia Sportswear
The outdoors brand will temporarily close 95 of its reopened retail stores today from 1 to 3 p.m. CDT during the memorial for George Floyd. “We stand against racism in all its forms, but in this moment, we want to be clear that we are proud to say black lives matter. George Floyd’s life mattered,” the company said in an internal memo from the company’s executive team provided to WWD.
The brand’s e-commerce site will continue to operate while the stores are closed and will post a statement on Floyd’s death and the steps the company is taking to fight racism, a spokesman said. The site showed a black screen with white lettering that read: “We Are Taking Action” and a line about the closure of the stores followed by the hashtag #blacklivesmatter.
In addition, Columbia said it will make donations to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and the Marshall Project “to advance our country’s understanding of racism and its root causes and to promote equal justice and opportunity.” It did not disclose the amount. It also said it will double match employee donations to any non-profits focusing on addressing racism, up to $1,000 through July 31. It then provided a list of organizations such as Black Lives Matter, Color of Change, Equal Justice Initiative and the National Urban League.
Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Brioni, Boucheron, Pomellato, Dodo, Queelin, Ulysse Nardin, Girard-Perregaux and Kering Eyewear have contributed to organizations focused on combating systemic racism and ending police violence toward the black community in the U.S. Kering has made a donation to the NAACP and Campaign Zero, an organization that aims to reduce police violence in the U.S.
H&M Group pledged to donated $500,000 to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, Color of Change and the ACLU. The company is also providing its colleagues with additional resources to further educate them around implicit bias. Further, in the U.S., it will develop stronger relationships with historically black colleges and universities and increase community events that continue to empower the black community. It also plans to mobilize efforts to increase voter registration. It is also assembling a task force of black leaders to help apprise the company on further work.
Banana Republic, along with Gap Inc. brands Athleta, Gap and Old Navy have come together to donate $250,000 to support the NAACP and EmbraceRace to fight for equal rights.
In addition, Banana Republic will donate more than $20 million of new clothing to those in need, including millions of unemployed Americans who need support getting back to work and on their feet.
Teaming up with Delivering Good, a nonprofit that supports Americans affected by poverty and tragedy, Banana Republic will donate clothing to a variety of partnership organizations in states most impacted, including Hour Working Women Program in New York and Central City Neighborhood Partners in Los Angeles.
The Gap Foundation also revealed a $1 million donation to local, state, national and internal nonprofit organizations to support underserved families during the coronavirus crisis.
The company is participating in peaceful protests and making that time available for anyone on the team who wishes to do so. It is also supporting organizations working for voting rights initiatives, signing and sharing petitions to support Black Lives Matter and other action groups and joining the virtual Town Hall Thursday night. For the month of June, the company will be donating 10 percent of all profits to the NAACP.
After consulting with its black colleagues, the company is establishing a Black Employees Forum to put into action a racial equality learning program across the business. The company plans to step up efforts to achieve greater diversity among the designers they carry and starting in late August, will publish an annual breakdown of the designers they support by ethnic background. They will also work harder to get better representation of different communities at every level of their business and have committed to publishing an annual breakdown of colleagues at different levels of seniority by ethnic breakdown.
The company is donating to the Northwest Community Bail Fund, Black Lives Matter Seattle, Communities United for Police Reform and Until Freedom. It is closing its site for 24 hours, and encouraging its customers to support the organizations it supports in its stories.