Our commitments

In June 2020, Microsoft made a five-year commitment to address racial injustice and inequity, but the work doesn’t stop there. The Racial Equity Initiative focuses on three efforts.

Report: Strengthening Our Communities

We are committed to work towards long-term systemic change. This is the first of three reports sharing progress on our commitments to strengthen our communities. Our ecosystem and culture reporting will come later this year.

View the report

Learn more about our commitments

Strengthening our communities Strengthen our culture of inclusion Engaging our ecosystem

Progress to date

We are committed to work towards long-term systemic change. Here is some of our progress to date, but our work is never done.

Justice reform

We’ve established 20+ new partnerships this fiscal year, collaborating on a variety of projects designed to help reduce racial disparities in the justice system. We’ve partnered with a variety of organizations using technology and data to better understand community needs and help improve policing, prosecution, and diversion practices.

For example, in 2020, in response to the ongoing racial injustice in the Black and African American community, we donated a total of $1.5 million to several racial justice organizations, including the Equal Justice Initiative, Innocence Project, Minnesota Freedom Fund, and NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund. Since June 2020, we have seen $11 million in donations (inclusive of employee match) to civil rights, social action, and advocacy nonprofit organizations.

In less than 12 months we have seen nearly two times the donations to these organizations than what we saw in the previous six years combined. We also committed another $50 million to strengthen and expand our existing Justice Reform Initiative by June 2025.

Skills and education grants

We have awarded grants to 50 nonprofit workforce development and digital skilling organizations to Black and African American-led and supported community-based nonprofits across the US.  These nonprofits will collectively receive $15 million over three years to support operations and capacity building and will be provided with tech enablement services.

Of the 50 organizations, 49 are new grantees to Microsoft, including the Hidden Genius Project in Oakland, which trains and mentors young Black men in technology creation and entrepreneurship; and TechBridge in Atlanta, which aims to break the cycle of poverty through the innovative use of technology.

We have also provided $2 million in grants to 12 Historically Black Colleges and Universities to support curriculum development, student scholarship, faculty training, and online learning during COVID-19.

Expanding access to broadband

We have launched partnerships and projects driving adoption of affordable broadband, devices, and skilling in eight target cities: Atlanta, Cleveland, Detroit, El Paso, Los Angeles, Memphis, Milwaukee, and New York City.

Our projects will test a variety of models for connecting Black and African American families, and other families of color, to affordable internet service, computers, and digital skills, with a goal of improving outcomes in education, healthcare, and economic opportunity.

Nonprofits

We introduced our Nonprofit Tech Acceleration for Black and African American Communities program, which uses data, technology, and partnerships to help local organizations across the country modernize and streamline operations with technical solutions including licenses, discounts, implementation consulting, and concierge services.

The program works with organizations large and small at all stages, including startup nonprofits. The short-term goal is to help 1,000 community-based organizations accelerate their missions and drive greater impact through digital transformation.


It takes all of us

Meet some of the employees who are working on our Racial Equity Initiative.

"We’re a tech company, so we’re uniquely qualified to use technology and data to make a positive difference and help drive reform."

- Shelley McKinley, Microsoft VP for Technology and Corporate Responsibility

News and stories

See the latest news, announcements and stories about our progress

Additional resources

For press information:

Microsoft Media Relations, WE Communications, (425) 638-7777, rrt@we-worldwide.com