"Racism: no one should feel alone or stay silent," Karima Silvent, Global Head of HR at AXA
June 06, 2020
As a black woman I am no stranger to being the minority in the room, and I can tell many stories of the assumptions and thoughtless comments some people have made towards me or family members throughout my life. Like many, I am upset and deeply saddened by the tragic events in the US; I keep dreaming that racial equality will one day come true. To add George Floyd to the list of names of people who have died suffering the extreme end of racism – a list that is very long and not just a tragedy but a shameful reminder of racism and inequalities in the world– gave me much to think about these past days.
This terrible event has thrown a spotlight – again – on a topic that is important to me personally, an everyday reality for so many people across the world. Every day in every town in the world someone is rejected, treated differently, disrespected or ignored because of their origin and color of their skin. This demonstrates once again that we need to continue pushing harder for progress and move societies forward.
As the HRD of a global organization that is proud to act since the beginning of its history on all dimensions of Inclusion and stands for equality, I insist that there is no room for racism or any form of discrimination at AXA.
But no organization is immune from the challenges posed by racial bias and these events strengthen our resolve to go faster and further on all actions fighting any form of bias.
Each one of us must take time to examine our own bias and actions and be an ally to our friends, colleagues, and also to people we don’t know at all, but we see are impacted by racism and intolerance.
No-one should feel alone or stay silent. Positive change starts with each one of us to condemn discrimination and act in the big or small ways to make the world a more equal place.
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