ESPN reports Michael Jordan and Jordan Brand have pledged $100 million to the promotion of racial equality and social justice.
Over the next decade the money will pass through national organizations “dedicated to ensuring racial equality, social justice and greater access to education.”
Joint Statement from Michael Jordan & Jordan Brand regarding $100m donation. pic.twitter.com/yYXWh5eBZl— Estee Portnoy (@esteep) June 5, 2020
“Black lives matter. This isn’t a controversial statement,” read the joint statement from Jordan and his company released last week. ”Until the ingrained racism that allows our country’s institutions to fail is completely eradicated, we will remain committed to protecting and improving the lives of Black people.”
The statement comes amid a global outpouring of support for the Black Lives Matter movement spurred by outrage caused by the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police on May 25.
Floyd’s tragic death follows the recent killings of Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, not to mention the countless other Black lives lost due to the misconduct of a law enforcement agency embedded with insidious and systemic racism.
Jordan Brand plans to create opportunities and provide access to education within communities across the US. The company will also take an active role in backing organizations working to accomplish policy change.
“We must join forces with the community, government and civic leaders to create a lasting impact together,” Jordan Brand president Craig Williams said. “There is still more work for us to do to drive real impact for the Black Community. We embrace the responsibility.”
Following the release of Jordan Brand’s statement, Michael Jordan addressed the killing of George Floyd, specifically.
Statement from Michael Jordan: pic.twitter.com/lWkZOf1Tmr— Jordan (@Jumpman23) May 31, 2020
“I don’t have the answers, but our collective voices show strength and the inability to be divided by others. We must listen to each other, show compassion and empathy and never turn our backs on senseless brutality. We need to continue peaceful expressions against injustice and demand accountability. Our unified voice needs to put pressure on our leaders to change our laws, or else we need to use our vote to create systemic change. Every one of us needs to be part of the solution, and we must work together to ensure justice for all.”
Jordan Brand was launched in 1997 during Jordan’s final season with the Chicago Bulls and has engaged with philanthropy since its founding.
Jordan’s recent commitment is a continuation of his support for social justice and police reform.
In 2016, Jordan pledged $1 million each to the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s Institute for Community-Police Relations and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.