Hundreds of thousands of visitors will enter the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, DC, over the next year and experience the newest exhibit – Make Good the Promises: Reconstruction and Its Legacies. They will see more than 175 historic objects, 300 images and 14 media programs that help bring to life African Americans’ experiences following the Civil War. This ranges from Harriet Tubman’s apron to a South Carolina church pew to records from the Freedmen’s Bureau. For many, this exhibit will enhance their understanding of African American history and expand their perspective on America’s history.
The museum offers a unique educational experience that helps to positively impact national conversations on race and social justice, and promote greater diversity, equity and inclusion. At bp, we’re committed to better understanding the diverse perspectives that our employees and society encompass. We want to be a force for change and understand that, as a company, we can learn from the NMAAHC and use its lessons to support a more inclusive work environment and build a better world. Simply put, we aim to be a workplace where all people are valued, voices are heard, talent is nurtured and where prejudice is not tolerated.
This is why we are supporting the NMAAHC as part of its corporate leadership council for the next five years. In this way, we’ll help to secure the future of the museum, contributing to its next phase of growth, increasing its reach, and advancing its research, exhibits, and programs. The learnings gained from this new relationship will help improve and inform our ongoing diversity, equity and inclusion efforts at bp.
With racial injustices spotlighting challenges in the US, we announced bp’s framework for action in August 2020 to better our workplaces’ diversity and inclusion. The Framework’s pillars include:
- transparency, including an annual diversity and inclusion report;
- accountability, linking diversity and inclusion to performance;
- and talent, fostering African American employee development.
Since launching our framework, we have made progress on several of its programs. Our leadership inclusion for talent (LIFT) program to develop African American and other ethnic minority talent was piloted in early 2021 and is now available across the US and UK. And in October 2021, we began to roll out racial equity training for our most senior leaders with plans to expand to all employees in 2022. We’re also expanding our relationships with historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to increase diversity in our talent pool.
Dotch Phillips, production and operations project services manager and bp African American Network business resource group national one-team lead, said: “bp’s taking thoughtful action to bolster our diversity, equity and inclusion efforts with a focus on results. Coupling these activities with this sponsorship of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the future seems very promising for our team and the museum.”
About the museum
Since opening Sept. 24, 2016, the National Museum of African American History and Culture has welcomed more than 7.5 million in-person visitors and millions more through its digital presence. Occupying a prominent location next to the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the nearly 400,000-square-foot museum is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history. For more information about the museum, visit nmaahc.si.edu.
Read the full press release here.