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Taking action to make a difference

All of us at Storm ID were outraged at the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May. Over these last few months, that outrage has only grown as our attention has been drawn to other horrific acts of racism, past and present, not just far away but close to home. The wave of anger and injustice that has swept the world has highlighted that systemic racism exists and needs to be confronted. It has brought home to many that racial inequality and prejudice is a daily occurrence and a painful reality.

As a business that really seeks to make a difference in the world, Storm ID stands against racism, which is why we support Black Lives Matter, the global network that seeks to bring justice, healing, and freedom to Black people across the globe.

Although we’ve not remained silent, we’ve taken our time to consider the actions we can take that we believe can make a difference. We want to do more than make pledges and we want to be genuine about our commitment to continual improvement on this issue.

“Make a difference – We believe in making a difference. That’s why we give our people the freedom to think differently, challenge convention, and work on projects that matter to them”

This statement is boldly declared on our career’s website.
It encapsulates the values that have driven us over the last 19 years to do great work that makes a difference for people and society. However, looking back, it’s clear we’ve not done enough as a business to educate ourselves on the issue of systemic racism and how it affects people and society. Fixing the problem of systemic racism requires acknowledgement that there is a problem in the first place.

Like many other individuals, organisations and businesses, we’ve been working out how best to channel our outrage to bring about positive and lasting change. For several years we’ve benefitted from having a Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Committee and it has played an important role in raising awareness of a range of issues including mental health, gender balance and unconscious bias which have resulted in changes to processes that have had a positive impact.

Importance of dialogue

As we’ve taken a deep dive into constructing our response to systemic racism, it’s evident we need to improve how we dialogue.

Several of the team have remarked that they feel uncomfortable engaging in dialogue on certain issues for fear of inadvertently offending others. We want all of the team to feel that Storm ID is a safe space where we can have open dialogue on important matters, like race, which in turn allows us to implement measures that can change views and behaviours, and indeed, inspire solidarity and action.

While we will always take action to counter inappropriate behaviour in the workplace, we want all employees to feel equipped that they can speak without fear of inadvertently offending.

Dialogue – when practiced well – can be considered as a form of interaction between two or more people of different identities that emphasises self-expression and reciprocal listening without passing judgement, in an intellectual and compassionate spirit of openness to mutual learning with deep transformative potential.

Being able to stimulate open and honest dialogue on race, and other issues, is vital if we wish to advance Storm ID’s role as a progressive, inclusive workplace. Through dialogue, opportunities will present themselves where we can work towards the goal of making a real impact and delivering lasting change.

It’s clear that there’s much to be done in ridding workplaces and communities of racism and at Storm ID we’re ready to play our part in righting wrongs and collaborating with other like-minded people, organisations and businesses to achieve that end.

We see it as our duty, and the duty of others that we can influence, to take action to ensure that people, workplaces and communities are not just ‘not racist’ but actively ‘anti-racist’.

Commitment to act

Storm ID is committed to action in the following ways:

In our workplace, At Storm ID:

In the Community – Leith, Edinburgh and beyond:

We’ve taken inspiration from other organisations and we would love to hear from other individuals, businesses and organisations too, to understand what actions they’re taking to make a difference.

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