Picture: REUTERS
Picture: REUTERS

Michigan — More than 30 of the largest US companies have agreed to new disclosures of previously private race, gender and ethnicity workforce data as part of a push by the New York City comptroller and three city retirement funds.

Amazon, General Motors and Goldman Sachs Group are among 34 companies that have agreed to share the regulatory filing when they report new numbers next year, Comptroller Scott Stringer said in a statement on Monday. Morgan Stanley, PepsiCo, and Coca-Cola have also promised data, the comptroller said.

More than a dozen S&P 100 companies already release the detailed form but they are the exception.

The initiative is part of a broader push to compel workforce transparency at companies that have made explicit statements of support for equality after broad protests triggered by the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police and disproportionate deaths of minorities from Covid-19.

Two other groups were formed earlier this month to ensure all public companies have at least one black director.

The New York initiative began in July and is being pressed by the city’s employees’ retirement system, teachers retirement system, and board of education retirement system. The comptroller and funds targeted 67 companies that made statements of support for reform after the unrest but weren’t disclosing the detailed reports they are required to make each year to the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Women have made some gains under direct pressure from investors such as BlackRock and Vanguard Group, but that has meant less focus on people of colour. Black board membership has slipped and many minority workers have not been promoted into positions where they have a better shot at becoming a CEO one day. There is no current US mandate to publicly disclose the race or gender of employees.

About 30 companies of varying sizes, including Apple and Facebook, already release copies of their private federal form on their websites. Just Capital, a non-profit that pushes companies for the same disclosure, says only 4% of companies release the EEOC data.

Intel went a step further late in 2019 and also revealed pay data by race, ethnicity and gender required by the EEOC. The data can be used to track progress companies are making in reform because the collection methods are uniform.

The companies named by Stringer also include BlackRock, Starbucks, and Verizon. The companies have agreed to disclose their forms as part of their submission of data for 2019 and 2020 to the EEOC in 2021. The 2019 filings were delayed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.


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