The CFDA Announces New Initiatives to Address Systemic Racism Within the Fashion Industry

After demonstrations have been held across the United States to protest the unjust death of George Floyd, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, aka the CFDA, has announced a series of actionable initiatives they will be setting in place immediately. With many designers like Brother Vellies's Aurora James calling for action from larger corporations, it's about time we see organizations within the fashion community, like the CFDA, speak up on how they will be supporting the Black community. Steven Kolb, The president and CEO of the CFDA, and designer Tom Ford, who is the Chairman, outlined a list of tasks that will be undertaken by the organization to strive for change within the fashion industry.

"The CFDA will create an in-house employment program specifically charged with placing Black talent in all sectors of the fashion business to help achieve a racially balanced industry. This program will be tasked with identifying Black creatives and pairing these individuals with companies looking to hire. The CFDA will also create a mentorship program and an internship program focused on placing Black students and recent graduates within established companies in the fashion sector. The CFDA will implement and make available to our members a Diversity and Inclusion training program. We will make immediate contributions and take up fundraising activities in support of charitable organizations aimed at equalizing the playing field for the Black community such as, but not limited to the NAACP and Campaign Zero — amongst others."

The CFDA also urged members of the organization to take look at their corporate structure and make sure that they have a fair, racially balanced workforce. The letter also asked retailers to make sure their product assortment is representative of Black talent within the industry. Scroll on to read all of the messages posted by the CFDA ahead.