The following is excerpted from the Deseret News. To read the full article, CLICK HERE.
Corporate America might seem like an unlikely place to look for ways to heal our country’s divisions. But the Religious Freedom and Business Foundation’s third annual Religious Equity Inclusion and Diversity Index shows that some of the nation’s biggest companies are getting it right when it comes to bringing together Americans of different faiths.
This year’s survey, which was the largest to date, assessed how Fortune 500 companies in the United States approach religious issues. American Airlines came out on top, claiming the Religious Equity Inclusion and Diversity Index’s No. 1 spot for its efforts.
Other familiar names crowded the top 10, including Intel, Dell, Texas Instruments and Google. Among the additional corporations surveyed, which included Global Fortune 500 companies and other businesses, the information technology company Accenture took first place.
The companies that ranked the highest on the Religious Equity Inclusion and Diversity Index have some common approaches, according to Brian Grim, the Religious Freedom and Business Foundation’s founding president.
“They’re not just ticking a box and having a faith-based ERG (employee resource group) or covering religious discrimination in their training. They’re having a holistic approach to religious inclusion,” said Grim, who added that the most successful corporations aren’t “just inward focused but are also willing to share their experiences with other companies.”
Businesses that want to do better in this area should look to other companies to help. “What really is the change agent is the company to company transfer of knowledge,” said Grim.
The spirit of openness — of sharing and learning — is a core component of cultivating an inclusive environment of any kind.
During Ramadan, for example, the digital infrastructure company Equinix, which ranked sixth on this year’s index, held several panels to help employees better understand the Muslim holiday. During a 2021 panel organized by Equinix — and attended by employees from Google, Salesforce, PayPal and Apple — Muslim employees shared childhood memories of Ramadan, said Marsie Sweetland, founder of Equinix’s FaithConnect initiative. The panel included a segment during which non-Muslim employees had the opportunity to ask questions like, “‘What do we say? Happy Ramadan?’”
To read the full article, CLICK HERE.