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The Travel Industry Stands With #BlackLivesMatter Protesters

Protesters rally against police violence

The travel industry has joined numerous others to support for those protesting the murder of George Floyd (and numerous other unarmed Black men) by police.

The devastation of the travel industry from the impact of COVID-19 is still reverberating (reportedly up to 50% of those previously employed by the industry are now out of work)—so some travel companies aren’t even posting on social these days. But many of those that are still active are using their platforms to express their support for racial justice. Here are a handful:

Disney

The parent company of Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Disney Cruise Line released a statement Sunday, May 31st, saying, “We stand against racism. We stand for inclusion. We stand with our fellow black employees, storytellers, creators and the entire black community. We must unite and speak out.”

 

Olivia Travel

Olivia Travel, the lesbian cruise and resort travel agency that began as a feminist women’s record company in the 1970s posted “We, at Olivia, share your outrage and heartbreak at the murder of George Floyd, and so many others. We stand united with you against all racism and discrimination.”

 

Afar 

Afar the magazine and travel guide site didn’t exactly make a statement directly supporting the protests, but they did tweet several pointed posts in the past 24 hours. First it tweeted about "the urgency of our many different battles for equal rights, both past and present."                                          

 

and later noted,  “the power of getting outside of the cultural bubble and making connections that transcend cultural differences.”

 

Starbucks

Starbucks on Monday posted “We will confront racism to create a more inclusive and just world. We stand in solidarity with our Black partners, customers and communities. We will not be bystanders.” In 2018, Starbucks dealt with its own racial profiling, after a store manager in Philadelphia called the police on two Black men who hadn’t placed an order before attempting to use the restroom. In response the coffee giant created a chain-wide training on race, bias and inclusion, and it shut all stores one afternoon to discuss those issues.

 

Uber

A few years ago Uber lost thousands of riders when it was quicker to profit from a taxi strike protesting Trump’s xenophobic travel ban than to support those protesting. But this weekend, the company not only spoke up early, it put money behind the sentiment.

“My hope is that if each of us recommits to doing all we can to counter bigotry wherever we see it, change will follow,” Dara Khosrowshahi, chief executive of Uber Technologies Inc., tweeted Sunday, May 31st,  as he announced the company was donating $1 million donation to the Equal Justice Initiative, which works to end mass incarceration, excessive punishment, and racial inequality, as well as The Center for Policing Equity, which works with law enforcement to promote more equitable practices based on the scientific research. 

 

Delta Air Lines

In a June 1 statement Ed Bastian, CEO of Delta Air Lines joined 40 of Atlanta’s top business and community leaders (part of the Atlanta Committee for Progress), to pledge to “do our part” in taking concrete actions to “reverse the long history of systemic racism and injustice that is a stain on our great nation.”

The full statement:

The senseless and horrific events of the past several weeks have left the people of our community reeling with anguish, fear, frustration and justified anger. Our hearts ache for the pain being felt by our neighbors, friends, families and colleagues.

As business leaders in Atlanta, with its deep and rich legacy of peaceful protest, we know too well the injustice that continues to plague our community from racism, discrimination and violence. Our shared history compels us to work together to create a better future for everyone.

Our city’s leaders have been models for the nation with their compassion and empathy during the past several days. We thank Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, the City of Atlanta staff, the Atlanta Police and Fire Rescue Departments for their thoughtful, human approach to the unrest in our community. We are committed to working with them and other civic leaders to move forward to a more inclusive and just society.

We know that words aren’t enough. Concrete actions and solutions are essential to.

Collectively and individually, we believe in an inclusive world. We believe everyone’s voice should be heard. We believe in freedom of expression. And we stand ready to help build a better future for all.

As business leaders with deep ties to Atlanta, we pledge to do our part.

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