In times of great hurt, like the one we’re witnessing right now in America, I feel it’s important that we are talking about these issues out in the open. Now is not a time to be silent, but to make your support heard loud and clear.
In my own effort to stand united with those fighting racism and injustice, to support their message and their cause, I sent the following message yesterday to my fellow Netskopers to let them know that they are not alone in feeling the weight of these issues. That we can all take this time of great hurt and sadness to better educate ourselves to recognize and stand up against the systems that perpetuate these injustices in the fight for equality. In addition, I’ve personally donated to the Equal Justice Initiative and I would encourage everyone to support the many nonprofit and community organizations (whether financially or through volunteerism) that are working every day to address social injustice and oppose racism. To read my full thoughts, please see my note below.
As you’ve seen over the past week with demonstrations around the country, and even in our own backyards, the nation is hurting in the wake of the senseless deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and the deaths of countless others. It speaks to a larger problem of systemic racism within the United States (and other parts of the world), as the voices of the unheard are amplified through the demonstrations we’re seeing around the world. And their message is abundantly clear: We cannot continue to stand silent as fellow human beings are senselessly murdered and oppressed, by systems and people who threaten their lives and discriminate against them purely for existing.
And while we stand with those fighting for equality, we also condemn the groups that are taking advantage of these protests to loot and hurt small businesses. Their actions take away from the true cause and diminish the message protestors are trying to tell.
Many of you no doubt have also had to explain this to your innocent young kids as I have — kids who see no color, who are pure in their heart and intentions, and don’t understand why people would do this to someone. Frankly, sometimes I wish everyone was like these kids at heart, no matter the age (but in reality, we know this is not the world we live in or will anytime soon).
In this time of great hurt, I want to reiterate Netskope’s commitment to diversity and our zero-tolerance for racism of any kind. I know that times like these can bring out powerful emotions in all of us, and I want you to know that I’m feeling this too. This is a time for us all to listen, learn, and recognize these systems and stand up for all injustice when we see it. And while I think our policies and practices are strong, there’s always room for us to look deeper to see if we can be stronger — as such I will be asking the leadership team to come up with suggestions and I invite your input as well.
As always please know that I am here for you, and my virtual door is always open.
Please stay safe and talk soon,