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If We Aren’t Changing The System, We’re Perpetuating It

Betterment will not stand for the unequal treatment of Black people in our company, in our communities, or in our country.

Articles by Jon
By Jon Stein CEO & Founder, Betterment Published Jun. 01, 2020
Published Jun. 01, 2020
2 min read

Like so many Americans, I am haunted and angered by the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery—three of the latest of many lives that have been taken because they were Black. These and other recent demonstrations of police violence, racism, and inequality in America provide fresh evidence that we have a long way to go on the road to equality.

Betterment will not stand for the unequal treatment of people of color in our company, in our communities, or in our country. We will advocate for our Black colleagues, friends, and fellow citizens and work harder to build a nation that’s just for all, where we all can pursue happiness, without fear, oppression, or unequal treatment.

We all are accountable for the state of our country, and it’s our responsibility to acknowledge and address pervasive racism. My ask, particularly of those of us who are white and exist in a place of privilege: Pay attention to the significant events going on now. Educate yourself and others. Show your support for equality. Take action.

We as a country and community need not be afraid of challenging the status quo or changing the system if it’s not working for people. We should lean into it. I am. And so is Betterment. We live in a society that benefits people unequally, where some live in fear, and others take their safety and security for granted. If we aren’t changing it, we’re perpetuating it.

Our team has been sharing ideas to support those who are looking to get involved. We are compiling a list of organizations that support the fight against racial inequality, and encouraging employees to add to that list. Betterment will be matching their donations. (For now, these are cash donations; we’re looking at whether we might be able to add some of these organizations to Betterment Charitable Giving and to make them available to all our customers.) Personally, I have contributed to the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational FundColor of Change, and the Equal Justice Initiative.

There’s much work to do. It’s time we make real progress. I hope you’ll join us.

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