From the Desk of Vivek Sankaran:
Albertsons Companies Stands United with the Asian Community
Team, Last year, when the country was faced again with the deep roots of racism that have been allowed to perpetuate for far too long, our leadership team knew it was only the beginning of many courageous conversations to achieve meaningful change.
As I stated then, we at Albertsons Companies categorically condemn racism and discrimination of any kind. Each of us still has colleagues, neighbors, friends or loved ones who face prejudice, hatred and intolerance. Members of the Asian community are being attacked, beaten, and murdered. While there are several factors behind the rise in anti-Asian racism over the last year due to racist rhetoric surrounding COVID-19, there is a history of xenophobia toward Asian communities across America, including WWII Japanese internment camps that were predominantly located in states we serve today. Stop AAPI Hate, a national coalition documenting and addressing anti-Asian discrimination during the pandemic, said it received 3,795 self-reports of anti-Asian hate incidents between March 2020 and last month, the majority of which have been reported by women.
Again today and always - listening with compassion and taking action when it is needed are critical to ensuring that racism and hatred have no place at our company.
Please check in with your Asian team members today, listen to each other with compassion and work to address concerns they might raise. Doing so shows you are aware of what’s going on, and demonstrating care for their wellbeing by simply asking someone an open-ended question — “how are you feeling?” or “is there anything I can do for you?” Express that they are not alone, and we have resources available for those in need.
My commitment to ensuring that everyone’s voice is heard has never been stronger, so please reach out to your leadership, peers, or others who can be of support. This includes licensed counselors through our Employee Assistance Program. Lastly, you can also reach out to members of our Asian Network for support and guidance.
We must continue to set the example of Courtesy, Dignity, and Respect towards everyone who walks through our doors. We must make listening with compassion and taking action when it is needed a priority so we can ensure that racism and hatred have no place in our company or in the communities we serve. As a public show of support, Albertsons Companies Racial Justice and Equity Task Force has committed a $50,000 contribution to StopAPPIHate.org.
The first step to ending racism is to acknowledge it exists in the first place, and to have the courage to speak about it. We cannot put an end to racism by ourselves. It will take years before it can be fully rooted out, but let’s make this generation the last generation who must take up this fight. I know that when we stand united in combatting it, we can make a difference in our communities and beyond.