In a week that Electronic Arts was set to celebrate the latest edition of the Madden series, EA decided instead to focus on a more pressing concern affecting the world, racial injustice. Today, Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson released a statement to the employees of EA, outlining their long-term plan to fight for racial justice.
The statement announced that, “the EA executives team and I are meeting with the leadership of our Black Electronic Arts Team employee resource group to discuss our path forward as individuals, as a company, and as a community working towards change.” However, Wilson notes that just listening and discussing ideas and perspectives with leadership and employees, alone, won’t help. They to take action.
Electronic Arts will contribute $1 million to organizations like the Equal Justice Initiative, the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, and future partners that are dedicated to the fight for racial justice in the U.S. and against discrimination around the world. They are even prepared to match any donations made by employees to these and any other local organizations through the month of June.
Furthermore, Electronic Arts is creating a community outreach program that will provide a paid day off for employees to volunteer in their community. Wilson claims that, “With all of our employees around the world, that will represent more than 75,000 hours applied to the change we can make.” The video game publisher and developer will also identify the Juneteenth holiday (June 19th) as a company-wide volunteering day. The day will be organized by their Black Electronic Arts Team ERG and have employees participate in forums and virtual activities.
These steps are just the first of many that EA plans to make in the coming days. Wilson announced that the company will hold a Community Conversation next Tuesday, on June 9th, to discuss thoughts, feelings, and what else could be possible to ultimately ending racial injustice.
The efforts taken by Electronic Arts to put an end to systematic racism and racial injustice come off the heels of the tragic death of George Floyd, who was killed by law enforcement. His death has sparked protesting all across the world and caused companies like EA to reflect on how they can do their part to end systematic racism, racial injustice, and violence against Black people once and for all.
You can donate to any of the charities EA spoke of by clicking on their names above and the efforts of Black Lives Matter by clicking the link, here.