Black lawmakers will visit Silicon Valley next week to talk to Apple about diversity

“A record number of black lawmakers will be visiting Silicon Valley next week to ask executives at Apple, Square, PayPal and others what they’re doing to improve employee diversity,” Shirin Ghaffary reports for Recode. “The delegation of lawmakers in the Congressional Black Caucus will specifically ask how companies can better recruit and retain black employees in tech, who make up less than 3 percent of employees at 21 of the top tech companies, according to an analysis last year from the Center for Investigative Reporting.”

“It’s not the first time members of the Congressional Black Caucus have made the visit, but it’s the largest delegation the group has sent so far. Led by Congressman G.K. Butterfield, D-N.C., and Congresswoman Barbara Lee, D-Calif., the delegation will visit tech campuses and meet with groups of black employees from various tech companies hosted at Airbnb’s offices,” Ghaffary reports. “The group is looking for an update on how tech companies are doing since the Congressional Black Caucus created the taskforce Tech2020 in 2015. That group was formed to increase black representation at all levels of tech employment, from board members to engineers.”

“Despite political pressure, the percentage of black employees hasn’t changed much for some major tech companies. Google’s workforce has remained 2 percent black since 2014. Facebook saw its proportion of black employees increase slightly from 2 percent to 3 percent last year. Apple and Uber have a relatively larger percentage of black employees at 9 percent and 8 percent respectively,” Ghaffary reports. “‘Since launching Tech2020, a few companies have moved the needle on African American hiring. But most companies remain in the same place they were in 2015. This is not okay,’ wrote Congressman Butterfield in an email to Recode.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: Apple’s “Inclusion and Diversity” page is here.

Apple’s VP of Inclusion and Diversity leaving at year’s end – November 16, 2017
Apple diversity chief Denise Young Smith apologizes to staff for statements made at summit – October 14, 2017
Apple’s first ever VP of diversity and inclusion says she focuses on everyone, not just minorities – October 11, 2017
Apple’s new Vice President of Inclusion and Diversity will report directly to CEO Tim Cook – May 24, 2017
Apple’s board has urged shareholders to reject proposal to tie executive compensation to racial diversity quotas – February 27, 2017
Apple Inc. fights shareholders group demand for more diversity – February 15, 2017
Apple touts diversity of recent hires – August 3, 2016
Apple inches toward workforce diversity – January 20, 2016
Diversity report shows Apple’s U.S. workforce still mainly white and male – January 19, 2016
Apple’s Board of Directors says a call for diversity is ‘unduly burdensome and not necessary’ – January 15, 2016
Apple leads Facebook, Intel, Cisco, Google on gender diversity among Bay Area companies – November 17, 2015
Apple’s latest diversity report shows progress – August 13, 2015
Tim Cook is ‘personally involved’ in improving diversity at Apple Inc. – July 14, 2015
Apple donates over $50 million to diversity efforts – March 10, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook met privately with Jesse Jackson regarding diversity – December 9, 2014
Apple adds Vice Presidents, more diversity to Executive Leadership Team – August 15, 2014
A message from Apple CEO Tim Cook on diversity – August 12, 2014
Jesse Jackson calls on Obama to scrutinize tech industry’s ‘lack of diversity’ – July 28, 2014
Tim Cook: Apple will release diversity data ‘at some point’ – July 9, 2014
Jesse Jackson targets tech’s lack of diversity; sends letter to Apple, Google, HP, others – March 19, 2014
Apple changes bylaws after facing criticism about lack of diversity on board – January 9, 2014


  1. This is just WINING from Black Community. Why are they forcing companies to hire Black people??? Companies will hire talented people that suites their needs, they will not hire based on Skin Color. Just like Black people every other people regardless of community has got rights to be hired, provided they have the requisite skills. They are starting to promote the very thing they oppose so much. Segregation.

  2. I have a recommendation for those pushing diversity in the High Technology field:

    Before you bitch at the CEOs of companies in the Valley, first go to any University Engineering Department and take a look at who has voluntarily enrolled in that course of study. It is overwhelmingly male and is diverse- just not with many African-Americans. During my time in school most of the Black people majoring in Engineering were not Americans- they were from overseas and the numbers I have seen show that is likely still the case.

    The same is true for those Majoring in Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, etc. In crease the numbers of those enrolled and see the numbers increase at High Tech Companies.

    If you do not get the degree you are not going to be able to do the work, so why would anyone hire you?

    I do not care if you are white, black, brown, male, female, straight, Bi, Trans, whatever: if you have the education, certification, experience, ability and temperament- come on in. If you have not prepared yourself to work in a particular field or are not able to get along the problem is personal and not societal.

    I work in a Licensed Medial Profession and the only people that are going to be considered are those who have completed the necessary Degree, passed the necessary certification boards, acquired the necessary license, maintained their competency via regular continuing education and have good references. If you lack any of that HR will never forward your CV or application to anyone in a position to hire you. That is not racist, sexist or whatever. It is discriminatory in favor of those who have prepared themselves for the job, just as it should be.

  3. I used to live in Butterfield’s district in NC, Halifax County. He’s all about what Congressional pork he can get for his district.

    As we all know, the underrepresented problem isn’t just African-Americans, it’s also women in tech, and engineers. And, the root of the problem is education. To solve the problem of underrepresentation, we need to educate more African-Americans, more women and more engineers.

    Lastly, Apple is supposedly at 9%, which is very close to the actual African-American population percentage of 12%.

  4. “the lawmakers would like to learn what’s working from Square, PayPal and Apple, who do a relatively better job than their peers of hiring and retaining black talent, since they each have a workforce that is at least 6 percent black.”
    Okay, read the Recode article, and the key sentence was missing from MDN’s snippet. They’re visiting Apple to learn what’s working, so they can apply it elsewhere.

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