Corporations grapple with slavery reparations
The debate over reparations for slavery has moved from the political realm to the corporate one. At least two big British companies — insurer Lloyd’s of London and brewer Greene King — promised to make certain amends for their role in slavery. But activists want them and other companies to do more.
Why it matters: We usually hear about reparations as a political issue — a “societal obligation” of the federal government, as The New York Times’ Nikole Hannah-Jones wrote this week. But corporations, too, are being called out for how their involvement in slavery — and their modern-day policies and practices — perpetuate racism.
Driving the news: Protests over systemic racism have pushed more of the world’s oldest institutions to reckon with how they profited from slavery.
- Lloyd’s of London, the world’s largest insurance marketplace, apologized for insuring slaving ships in a release earlier this month. The 334-year old company was sued in 2004 by descendants of Black American slaves, but this is the first time Lloyd’s listed out remedies for its history.
- Among them: reviewing its policies to “ensure they are explicitly non-racist and providing “financial support” to charities that support Black and minority ethnic groups.
- The company did not respond to questions about how much they’re giving or which organizations they’ll support.