These past few weeks, and—particularly—this past week, have been difficult. I’ve watched and listened with everyone else as the outcries against racism, discrimination and injustice have come to a crescendo. The death of George Floyd is yet another shocking and sad reminder that while we as a nation have made progress, we still have a long way to go to protect the rights and freedoms of black Americans.
I’ve also listened to my staff as they’ve expressed to me their shock, sadness, anger, and frustration. I feel these emotions too. It’s never been clearer to me that something is terribly wrong with our system’s treatment of people of color.
As Americans, we all have the right to justice and equal opportunity. Unfortunately, that is not the reality for everyone. We still have a long way to go, and it starts with a commitment from each and every one of us to make positive changes in our lives.
And for the electric utility industry, we must redouble our commitment to diversity at every level. We’ve seen time and time again that this diversity and inclusion pays dividends, yielding teams that are rich with different backgrounds and ideas.
At APPA, we will build upon the commitment we made years ago in our strategic plan to make diversity and inclusion a priority—an area in which we all receive training with a goal of continued improvement. We will also review our related internal policies—ensuring that they are adequate and appropriately enforced.
Now is the time to take action when it comes to eliminating racism and hatred. I commit today to do my part.