June 14, 2021
We want to serve as a resource. To keep you abreast of critical issues dominating the national discourse—including diversity, equity and inclusion; the digital divide; STEAM education; entrepreneurship and small business—we’re compiling timely news and information in one place because the first step to fixing a problem is understanding it.
T.D. Jakes Foundation in Action
The T.D. Jakes Foundation is proud to be a part of The Dallas Regional Chamber’s (DRC) “Take Care of Business” multimedia vaccine public awareness campaign with a goal to increase the percentage of North Texans ages 16 and older receiving at least one vaccination shot from the current 60% to 70% this summer. As vaccine rates slowed in Texas and nationally, this campaign was launched to encourage more people to get vaccinated in Dallas, Collin, Tarrant, and Denton Counties so local businesses can thrive again. Learn more about the Take Care of Business campaign.
In an op-ed published by the Washington Post, T.D. Jakes, Chairman of the T.D. Jakes Foundation, writes, “Much has been made of attempts by foes like Russia to undermine the integrity of our elections and our democracy. But it’s becoming increasingly clear the biggest threat to our democracy may not be in Moscow but in state capitals like Tallahassee, Phoenix and Austin.” Read more from Chairman Jakes on the attempts by some to change our voting systems.
Need additional resources around STEAM this summer? The T.D. Jakes Foundation has compiled a list of STEAM resources for the arts, coding, and engineering and even resources specifically for kids and teachers. Check out our STEAM resources here.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
According to a report from Deloitte and the Alliance for Board Diversity, corporate boards are getting less white and male, but companies are “recycling” to achieve the feat — i.e., tapping a limited circle of executives of color to fill open slots. This means that in some cases, more diversity came “by recycling … existing Fortune 500 board members rather than bringing in new individuals with different skills, backgrounds, and perspectives.” Read more here.
As the U.S. continues to grapple with the issue of racial inequality, S&P Global analysis shows that disparities in opportunities–specifically for Black women in America–carry a significant cost, not just from a social aspect but also for the economy overall. In simplest terms, the inequalities Black women face have been a drag on both their bank accounts and on long-term economic growth for everyone. These inequities were only exacerbated by COVID-19 and may leave Black women even further behind economically. Read more from S&P’s analysis here.
“We’re certainly not getting as many training requests as we were last year,” observes DEI expert Dr. Joanna Abeyie, MBE, in a piece for Forbes. “There are definitely some leaders who saw anti-racism work as a tick-box exercise—something that, once done, didn’t need to be revisited again.” Here are just some of the ways in which Dr. Abeyie believes you can ensure your company’s anti-racism work is actually impactful.
Even as the negotiations between President Biden and Sen. Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) ended with no deal and the focus now turns to a group of bipartisan rank-and-file members in both Senate and the House, there is one aspect of infrastructure that still continues to enjoy broad support — and it also happens to be the most important part of the plan: $100 billion in broadband infrastructure. Read more about how this investment would ensure every single American has access to high-speed broadband.
President Biden’s American Jobs Plan promises to generate more than 19 million jobs for U.S. workers, with an emphasis on blue-collar occupations, rural communities, and communities most impacted by climate change. A key component of the plan is to expand high-quality and reliable broadband internet to all Americans. Nicol Turner Lee, Senior Fellow – Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution and Director the the Center for Technology Innovation, explores the potential impact of these investments in her latest TechTank podcast.
The future of online education is in flux after Texas lawmakers failed to pass a bill that would have funded schools that chose to offer remote instruction next year, leaving families who planned to enroll their students scrambling to make alternate arrangements. Read more here.