Diversity & Inclusion Pledge
The Balance is committed to answering your money questions. But we know many of our answers do not include solutions for readers underserved by the financial industry and financial publishing community. There are more complex challenges facing our Black, Indigenous, and other Readers of Color, and we must address these challenges in our content or we fail our core mission.
As a finance website, we believe we can make a lasting difference by increasing the diverse voices we work with and expanding the content and perspectives we publish. We have identified the following actions to take immediately, and we will continue to add to this list.
- We will do the work to reduce any bias in our content. Anti-bias and anti-racist education will be a regular part of working at The Balance. We commit to reviewing content that accounts for 75% of our traffic to make sure it appropriately acknowledges and serves all audiences by the end of 2020.
- We will hire Black, Indigenous, and People of Color as writers, editors, and review board members to support our mission of providing equitable content to all readers. By the end of 2020, we pledge to have BIPOC reflect 20% of our editorial team and new content production, up from its current 5%.
- We will focus on representation, and amplify BIPOC voices. Finance is more than numbers. When readers personally identify with a person or story, they are more likely to be motivated. To further these efforts, we will launch a personal stories series at the end of August that showcases successes and challenges in the world of personal finance, and pledge that at least 20% of those stories will be from BIPOC voices.
- We will highlight the importance of diversity in companies. We review and recommend financial products and services, and we want our readers to make educated purchasing decisions. We will highlight where companies stand on anti-racism, diversity, and social responsibility through our existing reviews, profiles, and roundups.
Most important, we know there is no progress without accountability. We hope and plan to get a lot right, but know we may get things wrong. However, we always promise to be transparent about our process. We will publicly provide a quarterly update on all these points and those we add to this page.
Update: December 2020
- Addressing bias in our content: Our Anti-Bias Review Board—financial experts and professionals with a background in supporting diversity, inclusion, and racial justice initiatives—have reviewed content representing 76% of our traffic and identified places to better address systemic racism and its relationship to personal finances and the economy. Editors and writers are in the midst of making changes recommended by the board.
- Hiring: We have added BIPOC contributors to the group of writers, editors, and review board members who produce and evaluate the content on The Balance. BIPOC represent 32% of our staff and freelance editorial team, as of the third quarter of 2020. Our original pledge did not include our Financial Review Board, which is part of why the number increased so much. We continue to recruit for open staff and freelance roles, and diversity and inclusion remains a top priority in that process.
- Amplifying BIPOC voices: We ran a 10-part Q&A series during the second and third quarters on how COVID-19 has affected workers and small business owners. Of the personal stories we shared, 30% came from BIPOC. We plan to run another series in the first quarter of 2021, with a goal of continuing to amplify diverse voices.
- Highlighting diversity in companies we write about: We haven’t made progress on this initiative in published content, as we’re continuing to research and evaluate ways to do this in a clear and fair way. We’re renewing our efforts and aim to reach this goal in the first quarter of 2021.
Change is incumbent on us, and we encourage our readers to share their thoughts and ideas for improvement by emailing us at email@example.com.