Nike Names Juneteenth - June 19 - a Paid Holiday for Staff

Nike gives staff Juneteenth - June 19 - as a paid holiday. That's the day in 1865 that American slaves discovered they were free.
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Sports-apparel titan Nike  (NKE) - Get Report is giving its workers a paid holiday on June 19 to commemorate Juneteenth, the day in 1865 that American slaves discovered they were free.

Other companies observing the Juneteenth holiday include Twitter  (TWTR) - Get Report and Square  (SQ) - Get Report.

Nike CEO John Donahoe disclosed the move in a memo to employees that was shared with several news organizations. 

In the memo, he said the company’s employees have complained that it’s not doing enough to support its black workers.

“When we say that Black Lives Matter, it applies to the world outside of Nike and, importantly, it applies to our black teammates within Nike,” Donahoe wrote. 

“Simply put, we need to hold ourselves to a high standard given the heritage of our company and our brand.”

In a memo to employees last week, he said, “While we have made some progress over the past couple of years, we have a long way to go,” in terms of the company’s diversity.

Donahoe said in Thursday’s memo that Nike will sponsor two weeks of programming and learning opportunities about racial inequality for its workforce. 

“Our expectation is that each of us use this time to continue to educate ourselves and challenge our perspectives and learn,” he said.

Black Adidas  (ADDYY)  employees too have complained about discrimination.

The company acknowledged their point, saying on Twitter Wednesday, “we’ve celebrated athletes and artists in the black community and used their image to define ourselves culturally as a brand, but missed the message in reflecting such little representation within our walls.”

Adidas promised to fill 30% of its current job openings with people who are black or Hispanic.