Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Action
Furthering our commitment to DEI by supporting girls and young men of color
It was late spring 2020. COVID lockdowns kept us at home isolated from everyone and everything except our television sets, computer screens, and phones. All we could do was watch. For eight minutes and 15 seconds on Monday, May 25th, we watched as a white police officer pinned George Floyd, a black man, to the ground with his knee while he casually kept his hands in his pockets. We watched life drain from George Floyd’s body.
We were transfixed as we watched racism in action.
Many people felt helpless, frustrated, and angry. People all over the world took to the streets in protest and sounded off on social media. In the days and weeks that followed George Floyd’s death, several major corporations shared statements denouncing these actions. Our former chief executive officer, Alistair Field, who is a proponent for fairness, justice, and equity was upset by the news. He shared a message with all employees about the company’s zero tolerance stance on racism and inequitable treatment. We also shared a message in support of being antiracist on our external channels. Shortly afterward, we formally established a working group to meet monthly to brainstorm ways that we could share information, initiatives, ideas and education around DEI celebrations and affinity months at Sims Limited across the globe.
DEI in Action
As with many other companies, we refocused our efforts around diversity, equity and inclusion. We provided unconscious bias training for all employees with an 84% completion rate. And our support for antiracism and commitment to DEI did not stop there. While we’ve always had a commitment to DEI at Sims Limited, since 2020, we:
- Continued to celebrate the diversity of our employees and the communities where we live and operate through affinity weeks/months and local events
- Launched Women Leading @ Sims, a 10-month employee development curriculum for emerging female leaders across the company; now in its third cohort
- Joined Supply Nation, the main organizational body that represents and certifies Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses in Australia
- Outlined ways our company can contribute to Australia’s national reconciliation movement with two endorsed Reconciliation Action Plans (Reflect and Innovate)
- Endorsed the Voice to Parliament, a referendum about whether to change Australia’s Constitution to recognize the First Peoples of Australia
- Hosted “Sims Talks” featuring leading voices in DEI to engage, encourage and educate employees
- Launched global workshops to kick-off our multi-year DEI strategy
- Became a signatory of the 40:40 Vision by pledging to achieve gender balance in executive leadership by 2030
- Demonstrated our commitment to upholding human rights
- Made substantial progress against closing the gender pay equity gap
- Conducted inclusive leadership workshops with leaders from each region across our global network to raise awareness and develop foundational leadership skills so we can deeply embed DEI into the culture we are nurturing
Support for the Obama Foundation
At Sims Limited, we are a purpose-led company. One of our principles of purpose is accountability, and to ensure that we are holding ourselves accountable for our commitment to antiracism and DEI, we recently made a donation to the Obama Foundation. These funds will provide support to two essential initiatives: the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance and the Girls Opportunity Alliance.
The mission of these two programs is aligned with our aim to create safe and supportive communities for boys and young men of color, as well as empower adolescent girls worldwide by ensuring they have access to quality education.
The My Brother’s Keeper Alliance
The My Brother’s Keeper Alliance is a cross-sector, national call to action that addresses the unique challenges faced by boys and young men of color. Through innovative programs and partnerships, it seeks to dismantle barriers and build communities that provide equal opportunities for success. By supporting this initiative, we are joining hands with the Obama Foundation in working toward a more inclusive society.
The Girls Opportunity Alliance
The Girls Opportunity Alliance is another invaluable initiative spearheaded by the Obama Foundation. It focuses on empowering adolescent girls globally through education. By breaking down the barriers that prevent girls from accessing quality education, this alliance aims to unlock opportunities for personal and professional growth. Our donation will enable girls from all walks of life to achieve their full potential and contribute positively to their communities.
Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
At Sims Limited, we firmly believe that diversity, equity, and inclusion are crucial elements in creating a fair and just society. By aligning with the Obama Foundation and directing our resources toward the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance and Girls Opportunity Alliance, we are taking proactive steps to address the disparities that exist within our communities. We understand that true progress can only be achieved when everyone, regardless of their gender, race, or socio-economic background, is given equal opportunities to succeed.
Our donation to the Obama Foundation is a testament to our commitment to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion – not just inside the company, but in the communities where we live and work, as well. By supporting the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance and the Girls Opportunity Alliance, we are actively contributing to the creation of safe and supportive communities for boys and young men of color, as well as empowering adolescent girls worldwide through education. Together, we can build a more inclusive society where everyone can thrive and reach their full potential.