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George Floyd Killing: Tech giants Tim Cook, Satya Nadella speak against racism

The tech fraternity spoke against racism and condemned the killing of George Floyd, a 46-year-old unarmed black American by Minneapolis police officers.

twitter-logoYasmin Ahmed | June 1, 2020 | Updated 13:04 IST
(Source: Reuters)

Highlights

  • Apple had to shut some of its US stores in the backdrop of protests that turned violent after 46-year-old George Floyd’s death.
  • Apple CEO, Tim Cook, in a memo to his employees acknowledged the presence of racism present in today’s society.
  • Microsoft’s Satya Nadella and Google’s Sundar Pichai, too, voiced out their views against racism.

George Floyd, a 46-year-old black American was arrested and killed on May 25 by four police officers from Minneapolis Police. The incident has drawn rage and sparked protests all over America with people calling out to police brutality and racism.

Tech giants Tim Cook and Satya Nadella addressed their employees and have voiced their views against racism separately.

In a memo addressed to his employees, Apple CEO, Tim Cook condemned the killing of George Floyd.

"To stand together, we must stand up for one another, and recognize the fear, hurt, and outrage rightly provoked by the senseless killing of George Floyd and a much longer history of racism," Cook wrote.

Apple had to shut some of its stores in the US after protests took a violent turn.

Cook acknowledged the presence of racism in today's society and wrote, "That painful past is still present today — not only in the form of violence but in the everyday experience of deeply rooted discrimination. We see it in our criminal justice system, in the disproportionate toll of the disease on Black and Brown communities, in the inequalities in neighborhood services and the educations our children receive. While our laws have changed, the reality is that their protections are still not universally applied."

Cook further said that the communities of colour continue to endure discrimination and trauma.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, too, spoke against racism in a Town Hall meeting with his employees and Kathleen Hogan, Chief People Officer & EVP, Human Resources.

"I want to start by talking about an issue that is important to all of us and is impacting and hurting many amongst us, very directly, and very severely. I also know that the every-day racism, bias, and hatred in the news today is not new, and it's far too often the experience and reality in daily lives, particularly for the Black and African American community," Nadella said.

"My feeling is that we can start by checking in with each other, ask all colleagues how they're doing and what they need, have empathy for what others are feeling."

On late Sunday evening, Google and YouTube condemned the killing of George Floyd.

Pichai wrote, "Today on US Google & YouTube homepages we share our support for racial equality in solidarity with the Black community and in memory of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery & others who don't have a voice. For those feeling grief, anger, sadness & fear, you are not alone."

Floyd was arrested after a deli employee called 911 accusing him of buying cigarettes with a counterfeit $20 bill. In a video that went viral, Floyd is seen being pinned to the ground by one of the police officers.

The officers who violated the policies of the Minneapolis Police Department were fired. Derek Chauvin, the officer seen pinning Floyd to the ground was charged with murder and manslaughter.

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