THE A PLEDGE MANIFESTO
We are at an inflection point in our country not seen since the Civil Rights era of the 1960s. Awareness of the inequities and systemic racism that Black and Brown people experience in our society has permeated the hearts and minds of Americans across our entire nation.
We must seize upon this time. Eyes have been opened with a new sense of empathy. Half-measures and good intentions are not enough. We must be willing to commit to actionable, measurable progress against ambitious and worthy goals.
It is from that spirit that this pledge was born.
We believe that to attack systemic racism and social inequities in a truly meaningful way, people must come together, hand in hand, to create a path for systemic opportunity.
And thus, we are asking Atlanta advertising and marketing agencies to sign a pledge committing to matching the diversity of their team to that of our city by 2030. Currently, demographic studies show that in 2020, Atlanta’s population is 62% People of Color, 38% White.
While our city’s demographics will inevitably shift over time, the point of this pursuit is to acknowledge the disparity in opportunity in the advertising and marketing industry — and more importantly, to take real, measurable actions to correct it.
The agencies that join in taking this pledge will use our collective power to intentionally address the myriad obstacles preventing systemic opportunity from being a reality today.
We begin with the end goal in mind: creating an equitable, diverse, representative workforce in Atlanta’s advertising and marketing industry. The specific strategies we use on this journey will form as we begin to work together. While we know that the actions necessary to secure the intended impact will change as our community and nation change over time, we must always remember that everything we do will ladder up to our vision of inclusive opportunity within our industry. This goal will be our relentlessly focused rallying point — our North Star.
While ambitious, we believe that with the necessary hard work and focus, 10 years is the optimal amount of time to achieve meaningful, lasting change at a scale we can directly affect.
We can find no good reason as to why, in a city like Atlanta, that a creative, influential, and high-paying wage industry like advertising and marketing should not be represented by a more diverse workforce.
In fact, it is precisely because we are creating this in Atlanta that we believe the goal is both worthy and attainable.
Atlanta was the home of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the American Civil Rights Movement. At the end of Dr. King’s life, the movement was just getting started, sharpening its focus on improving economic outcomes for historically marginalized people. We endeavor to continue his march toward economic justice.
We believe our craft — advertising and marketing — is the ideal place to begin. So in this place, at this time, we invite you to do what is right. Join us in taking the A Pledge to move our industry forward.
TIMELINE & PARTICIPANTS
The A Pledge kicks off in Q1 of 2021. Working collaboratively with brand and civic partnerships, participating agencies will create a timeline for a careful, focused push toward racial equity.