12 Jun 2020

Nike CEO John Donahoe makes Juneteenth a paid company holiday following behind other companies like Twitter, but goes another step further. Additionally, Nike plans to launch a diversity education program for employees as soon as next week. “When we say that Black Lives Matter, it applies to the world outside of Nike and, importantly, it applies to our Black teammates within Nike. Simply put, we need to hold ourselves to a high standard given the heritage of our company and our brand,” said Donahoe. While America generally celebrates the 4th of July 1776 as their date of Independence from British rule. However, the Emancipation Proclamation which ended slavery wasn’t issues until January 1863. Moreover, the last slaves not being notified of their freedom until June 19th, 1865. Nike sees Juneteenth 2020 not just as a paid company holiday. But also as an “…important opportunity to better commemorate and celebrate Black history and culture.

More from Nike’s CEO

Our expectation is that each of us use this time to continue to educate ourselves and challenge our perspectives and learn,” said the CEO. “As I have listened deeply during my first six months and over the past few weeks, what I have learned is that many have felt a disconnect between our external brand and your internal experience,” Donahoe wrote. “You have told me that we have not consistently supported, recognized and celebrated our own Black teammates in a manner they deserve. This needs to change.”

Below are images taken from a recent Nike ad denouncing racism and asking its audience, for once, don’t do it. For other incredible contributions Nike has made this year check out their efforts to fight COVID-19 click the links. Stay tuned for more on the latest and hottest sneakers from Yankeekicks.

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