The CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America) declares itself against systemic racism in an announcement by the committee chairman, Tom Ford.
Professionals in the world of fashion have expressed their solidarity in favor of antiracist organizations that are protesting for justice and equality in the United States and in the rest of the world, but they also need to reconsider their work, not only the one solely concerned on production. Above all there is a need to re-evaluate the organization of the brands themselves, by reconsidering the values and behaviors between the same employees.
This is why the CFDA met on June the 2nd to discuss the recent events and to promote a plan that could permanently erase the systemic racism in the fashion system.
“Black people in this country are reeling from years of injustice stemming from institutional constructs such as slavery, segregation, mass incarceration, police brutality and economic and voter suppression. The Black community is experiencing anger and frustration on top of the effects of the global pandemic that has hit communities of color the hardest”, declared Tom Ford. Subsequently he added: “having a clear voice and speaking out against racial injustice, bigotry and hatred is the ﬁrst step, but this is not enough. This is a deeply disturbing moment that speaks to us all. Our world is in deep pain. Our industry is in pain and it is not enough to simply say that we stand in solidarity with those who are discriminated against. We must do something.”
The plan stipulated by this meeting reads first of all the desire to introduce more Black talent to the fashion industry. The plan will consist of identifying new talents to be included in companies that will hire.
Added to this is the mentorship and internship program through which newly graduated Black students will be supported during their first placement in the industry.
Moreover, CFDA itself will implement and strengthen the Diversity and Inclusion Program for the benefit of its employees. The Organization will also undertake to support charitable organizations like NAACP and Campaign Zero, devoted to creating a fair and equal working system in support of Black communities.
Finally, the American council also made a call to the brands, in order to reconsider their staff in a fair and non-discriminatory way. It also made an appeal to the retail sector, asking that the brands involved enhance the talents of the Black community insufficiently represented so far.