USAA, a financial and insurance services firm, has pledged $50 million to nonprofit organizations over the next three years to advance racial equity and support the financial security of the military community.
President and CEO of USAA, Wayne Peacock said, “At USAA, we strive to create an environment where all employees feel like they truly belong and have the opportunity to reach their full potential. This commitment extends to the communities in which we live and work. It’s our mission to care for military families, a community that reflects our nation’s racial, social and economic diversity — and the complex issues that come with it. We recognize that there is more USAA can do to help close inequality gaps, and these investments are a fundamental part of our efforts.”
With the aim of helping close gaps in education and job training, employment, and income for communities of color and low-income military communities, USAA will focus resources on ensuring employee engagement in efforts to embrace diversity and inclusivity; invest in businesses owned by veterans, minorities, women, LGBTQ individuals, and individuals with disabilities; strengthen its recruitment and retention of diverse employees; and enhance measurement and analysis of its efforts to support a more diverse and inclusive culture.
According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Equality of Opportunity Initiative, black-owned non-employer businesses are less than half as likely to get financing as white-owned firms; as a result, black entrepreneurs are nearly three times more likely to have business growth and profitability negatively impacted by a lack of financial capital.
In addition, according to that data, Black and Hispanic workers with a bachelor’s degree (and higher) had lower median weekly earnings ($1,065 and $1,101 respectively) than whites ($1,342).
Moreover, the military community is as diverse as the country they serve, and this diversity will only grow over time. Research shows that 43% of the military community is listed as ethnic minority – and 47% of USAA employees identify as a person of color. In order to fulfill on its commitment to supporting the financial security of the military community, USAA is determined to help close the gaps that lead to racial disparities in education, employment and the income gap.
Prior to this announcement, USAA and The USAA Foundation, Inc., have committed more than $40 million in 2020 to provide financial relief for military members and their families, address food insecurity in its communities, advance research and treatments for COVID-19, and help bridge the digital divide for low- and moderate-income families suddenly faced with virtual learning.