Our Commitment to Standing Up Against Racism

Standing Up Against Racism: Sustaining Momentum for Equity

A message from Giant Eagle, Inc.
Published May 2022

Two years have passed since George Floyd’s murder. Our world has changed in unimaginable ways during this time, but one constant is the need for acknowledging and then removing inequities in our society, so everyone has the opportunity to thrive. At Giant Eagle, we recognize that we can’t truly thrive until everyone in our communities thrives. This is the bedrock concept that sustains our commitment to Stand Up Against Racism. To continue to honor Mr. Floyd, Daunte Wright, Breonna Taylor, and so many others, we remain completely dedicated to openly sharing what we are accomplishing against the important commitments we made in 2020. We will do this by transparently sharing our data to demonstrate our progress.

Commitment 1: Reach or Surpass 14% Black Representation at Leadership Levels by 2025.


While we adhere to our commitment to always hire or promote the most qualified person for a role, we also must be deliberate in recognizing that Black people have been historically underrepresented in Giant Eagle leadership and work to close the gap. We selected 14% as the goal because it reflects U.S. Census national representation when including people who identify as two or more races, one of which is Black.

We started our most recent fiscal year on July 1, 2021 with 3.93% Black representation in leadership and are currently at 5.12%, an increase of more than 25%. In total, the number of Black leaders in our company during this time increased by 16 Team Members. Our goal for the upcoming fiscal year is to reach 7% Black leadership representation.

Our efforts to identify and attract new Black leadership talent have taken our recruiting teams to collegiate career fairs as far as Alabama, Georgia and Texas, while simultaneously evolving our hiring efforts closer to home throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia. These higher education-focused efforts are complemented by the development of talent at the high school level through long-standing local partnerships.

Among our development activities is the launch of the Giant Eagle Black Leadership Development Program. The company welcomed the program’s inaugural class this past February, providing Black Team Members with opportunities to invest in themselves and their careers. We also paired approximately 50 high-potential Black leaders with senior leader mentors.

Additionally, we are implementing a new concept called the Inclusion Advocate. This role participates in group talent discussions and is entirely dedicated to listening for and raising awareness to when unconscious bias may be present in the way we evaluate talent. Over the next 12 months, we will build on our momentum by focusing on increasing authentic belonging among our current and future Black leaders.

Commitment 2: Place a Black business leader on our Board of Directors.

We successfully recruited and placed an accomplished Black business leader on the Company’s Board of Directors in early 2021 and since then have worked to ensure our Board is a welcoming place for her and all Board members. The Board and our company continue to benefit greatly from her professional expertise and unique perspective.

Commitment 3: Complete a compensation equity study by race and to make necessary adjustments, if they exist. 

Completed in 2021, our Compensation Equity Study showed there were no systemic differences in pay related to race throughout our company. We will continue to monitor our compensation rates and related processes to ensure ongoing equity and are committed to continuous learning about the direct and indirect ways inequities can unintentionally emerge so that we can best prevent them from happening.

Commitment 4: Help solve food access challenges in communities with significant Black representation.

In 2021, we launched Giant Eagle’s Community Pickup Point program, delivering pre-ordered groceries to community centers in neighborhoods challenged by convenient access to nutritious foods. In our first year, we launched Community Pickup Points in three distinct Pittsburgh neighborhoods: Sheraden, Homewood, and Larimer. As we move forward, we are working closely with our neighborhood partner organizations to find ways to increase availability and impact of the service.

In January of this year, we launched the Giant Eagle Mobile Market. In only a few short months, the Mobile Market has extended access to more than 400 fresh grocery staples, including, produce, dairy, meat, dry goods, and a selection of frozen items to Pittsburgh communities including Braddock, North Braddock, Rankin, Sheraden, Larimer, and two distinct areas within Homewood. We have received positive feedback from these communities and remain committed to evolving the Mobile Market so that we can increase our impact for these initial communities while also introducing the Mobile Market to new neighborhoods.

Since 2019, Giant Eagle has provided access to areas within Pittsburgh’s Hill District community by waving the delivery fee of grocery orders placed online, today resulting in hundreds of grocery orders hitting residents’ doorsteps each month. This spring, the company expanded the free delivery service to the Youngstown and Maple Heights communities in northeast Ohio, bringing the same fresh, high-quality foods and value found in our store to families’ doorsteps at no incremental cost.

Overall, this growing portfolio of solutions have combined have resulted in us creating new food access solutions across nine communities throughout western Pennsylvania and Ohio over the last 24 months.

Commitment 5: Partner with 124 new Black-owned businesses by 2025.

We originally stated this commitment as a goal to double the number of new Black-owned businesses we work with each year for five years, but for consistency in measurement purposes, we reframed this goal around a specific target number that represents the total number of new businesses we set out to identify under the original goal construct.

The revised goal - to add 124 new Black-owned business partners by 2025 - is achievable. In the past year we have introduced nine new businesses including ZEN Balms, Partake Cookies, and Me & the Bees Lemonade and aim to add at least 16 additional Black-owned businesses over the next 12 months.

Commitment 6: Continued education and dialogue. 

Our work must be grounded in a recognition that we must educate ourselves and participate in open and honest dialogue about racism and how to fight it. Over the past twelve months, Giant Eagle’s commitment to continued learning has taken many forms. We launched an e-learning course focused on helping Team Members understand how to define inclusion, equity, and diversity and why it is important. In the summer, we will launch a five-part e-learning series that dives into why this should be important to us as individuals, how to have difficult conversations, and the often-unseen influences of unconscious bias and microaggressions.

We also launched our first Inclusion Survey to help understand the sense of belonging in the company. The survey also included an opportunity for participants to share thoughts about where barriers may exist that prevent them from thriving in the company. Comprehensive action plans are being developed now and will be developed and implemented collaboratively between senior leadership and Team Members throughout the next 12 months.

Additional opportunities for learning included a panel discussion held in April featuring numerous community food access leaders and focused on understanding the intersection of food insecurity and race. This year also saw Giant Eagle launch our Inclusion, Equity & Diversity (IE&D) Regional Councils, aimed at leading grassroots efforts to engage more Team Members through our Business Resource Groups, encouraging local IE&D conversations and education opportunities, and creating store-level accountability for Giant Eagle’s IE&D goals.

Encouraging Progress and Steadfast Commitment

We have learned a great deal from the work put forward over the last 24 months and recognize how much more we need to learn. While we are proud of what we have accomplished so far, we know the hard work is ahead and for years to come. We must always be seeking to do more. We must simultaneously sustain the momentum created in support of Black Team Members and neighbors while recognizing that those from other backgrounds face their own inequities and need our support.

Thank you to every Team Member, Guest and community member helping Giant Eagle accomplish our commitments and for the independent work you do to make our communities more inclusive, equitable and diverse. We look forward to providing additional updates on our progress in the coming months.


Standing Up Against Racism - Our Commitment to Act


A message from Giant Eagle, Inc.

Published 5/24/2021


As we join our communities in preparation for an emotional May 25, we reflect on what George Floyd’s murder and the tragic deaths of so many other members of the Black community say about the systemic racism that exists in our neighborhoods and across the country today. Twelve months ago, we at Giant Eagle and GetGo recognized our responsibility to be a part of the solution. We set ambitious and specific goals to stand up against racism and hold ourselves accountable for our role in creating a more just society. Through continuous listening and acknowledging our responsibility to educate ourselves and act, we have made significant progress toward our initial goals. We also know this is just the beginning. Realizing our actions speak louder than words, we are taking this opportunity to honor George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Andre Hill, and so many others by providing an update on progress made toward our commitments.
 

We committed to reach or surpass 14% Black representation at leadership levels by 2025.
 

We have completed interviews of hundreds of Black Team Leaders across our organization to gauge interest and capacity for career progression and have implemented individual development plans to expedite their advancement. We have recently launched a Mentorship Program – pairing Company Officers with high-potential Black and other Team Members. Also, updates to our Diversity Hiring and Promotion Guiding Principles now mandate that at least one person of color and one woman must be interviewed before a job offer for a leadership position can be made.


To help us attract prospective Team Members, we commissioned a notable amount of the $350,000 awarded by the Giant Eagle Foundation in Summer 2020 to strengthen our partnerships with regional Urban League chapters. We have also established relationships with historically Black colleges and universities to increase our pipeline for new talent. Additionally, recently introduced hiring tactics including using “blind” resumes and diverse interview panels help all candidates to be considered and treated equitably.

We committed to placing a Black business leader on our Board of Directors within the next 24 months.

We successfully recruited and placed an accomplished Black business leader on the Company’s Board of Directors. She joins another recently appointed and well-respected business leader as our first two female executive directors on our increasingly diverse Board. We have already benefited from these powerful new voices and look forward to their unique perspectives bettering our company and the communities we serve.


We committed to complete a compensation equity study by race and to make any necessary adjustments.


After a robust data collection period, we have partnered with a highly specialized outside firm to analyze the information and identify areas of improvement, if they exist.

We committed to help solve food access challenges in three communities with significant Black populations this year. 

 

Giant Eagle Team Members have done a tremendous amount of work to learn about the historical and societal factors that contribute to communities struggling for access to affordable, quality and healthy food. Over the past year, we’ve been developing potential solutions to create a sustainable, scalable, and long-term approach to address the challenges by partnering with local organizations with a deeper knowledge of the communities and their needs.


We are in the process of launching Community Pickup Points – a program which offers community members the option to purchase groceries that are dropped off at convenient community pickup locations – via valued partnerships with impactful community organizations in three Pittsburgh neighborhoods: Sheraden, Homewood, and Larimer – achieving our year-one goal and providing us with important learnings to expand to six additional communities in the next 12 months. The Community Pickup Points program will evolve both within these initial neighborhoods and as it’s expanded to others to best meet the needs of the individual communities. We recognize that this model will only be successful when it’s brought to life in ways that allow the communities it benefits to see it as their own. Additionally, we know that the Community Pickup Points initiative may not meaningfully address food access issues everywhere and we are actively working on complementary solutions aimed at bringing high-quality, affordable foods to communities in need. We look forward to launching some of these solutions with community partners in the coming months.

We committed to double the number of Black-owned businesses we work with each year for the next five years.


We have established our baseline of current Black-owned suppliers, which required an extensive database review conducted by a third party. We are pleased to share we’ve achieved our year-one goal. Black-owned brands we’re thrilled to start selling in select stores include Akron Honey (mind-blowing good raw honey), Cobbler World (nostalgic and unique desserts), The Honey Pot Co. (plant-based feminine care), and A Dozen Cousins (soulfully seasoned beans).


To support the long-term growth of these supplier efforts, another portion of our $350,000 Giant Eagle Foundation commitment was donated to organizations in Pennsylvania and Ohio that promote the growth of Black entrepreneurs and businesses.

We committed to continued education and dialogue.


Open and honest discussions about the deep-rooted realities of racism can be uncomfortable. But we know that continued learning and dialogue are critical to our understanding of this complex issue and our ability to sustain the momentum needed to affect change in our company and our communities.


As such, we’ve designed a Team Member educational series that has three main goals: problem awareness and understanding, building empathy, and becoming allies. Our curriculum is designed to provide different perspectives, engage in meaningful discussions, and enable opportunities for Team Members to learn from each other’s experiences. Activities conducted in recent months included: discussions with Dr. Joe William Trotter, Jr., the Giant Eagle Professor of History and Justice at Carnegie Mellon University and Director of Carnegie Mellon’s Center for African American Urban Studies and the Economy (CAUSE), and with two leaders from the YWCA Pittsburgh – CEO Angela M. Reynolds, Ph.D., and Barbara Johnson, Vice President of the Center for Race and Gender Equity; a series of roundtable discussions designed to equip Store Leaders with skills they can use to engage in difficult discussions associated with systemic racism, inequality, police brutality, and more; and monthly movie and book club events intended to expose Team Members to new ideas and perspectives while creating a place to engage on important topics.

Racism's impact on Black and other communities.

 

We are proud of the initial progress we have made, but we know that our journey has just begun. Our obligation is to sustain the positive momentum we’ve built in the past 12 months. There is so much to learn about the complex nature of racism and its impact not only on our Black communities but also on our Asian American and other valued Team Members and neighbors. The rising violence against Asian Americans since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in particular has been eye-opening and serves as an important example of why our work to acknowledge inequities across communities remains. We must evolve our understanding of how racism affects all of us. Thank you to every Team Member, guest, and community member who joins us in these efforts.


We look forward to providing additional updates on our progress in the coming months.

A  Month to Commemorate the History and Contributions of our Asian & Asian American Neighbors


A message from Giant Eagle, Inc.
Published 5/5/2021


In the fall of 2020, Giant Eagle launched one of our newest business resource groups with the Asian American Business Resource Group (AABRG)! The AABRG was formed to create a community for Team Members identifying as Asian, and provide resources to promote positive engagement, personal development, and professional advancement.


We're thrilled to put the spotlight on our Asian American Business Resource Group as we celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month throughout the month of May. This month commemorates the history and contributions of Asians & Asian Americans in the United States.

 

Addressing the Recent Violence Against Asian Americans


A message from Giant Eagle, Inc.
Published 3/18/21


This past summer, Giant Eagle committed to taking meaningful steps to stand up against racism. Our work began with a focus on our Black Team Members, guests, and neighbors. Increasing attacks against Asian American people have made us realize we must expand our efforts. We cannot tolerate racism in any form.

There is a long history of discrimination against Asian Americans. Sadly, since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, harassment and violence have only increased. According to the Stop AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islanders) Hate reporting center, 3,795 incidents of Anti-Asian harassment and attacks were reported from March 19, 2020 to the end of February 2021. This string of attacks against Asian Americans includes horrendous events from New York City to San Francisco, with this week’s tragic shooting in Atlanta serving as the most recent reminder that the Asian American community is a continued target of hate and desperately needs our support.

Recently, we’ve held a series of listening sessions for Team Members to discuss reactions to attacks against Asian Americans and to share ways we can all stand up against racism. Our acknowledgement of this issue is an important first step but must be followed with concrete action. We will begin outlining specific steps to increase our support of the Asian American community. We remain steadfast to living our core values of Respect All and Do Right and building an inclusive, equitable, and diverse community where everyone feels welcome.

A Month to Celebrate Black History, Culture and Traditions with Our Giant Eagle Family


A message from Giant Eagle, Inc.
Published 3/1/21

Black History Month is a time to honor the many achievements and important contributions of Black individuals today and throughout history. This month was an opportunity for us to celebrate as a Giant Eagle family, and a chance to reflect and learn from the past so we can grow and make a better future.


As part of this year’s celebration of Black History Month, all Team Members were encouraged to participate in a host of educational opportunities and activities ranging from Black vendor Q&A sessions, Book Club and Movie Club discussions, and even a Black History Trivia Happy Hour. In addition to these events, we also hosted round table discussions with our store and corporate leadership teams and provided educational resources, suggested activities, and shared community event information celebrating Black History Month with our Team Members on our internal Team Member portal.


A Recap of Our 2020 Efforts


A message from Giant Eagle, Inc.
Published 12/29/2020

As we approach the end of 2020 and the expansion of a COVID-19 vaccine, we all yearn for a sense of closure. But as we at Giant Eagle reflect on the past 12 months, we are equally motivated to continue much of the work that was done.

We will continue to find numerous ways to use our time, talents, and other resources to fight against food insecurity and fight for social and economical equality for our Black Team Members, guests, and neighbors. This year, we used the $350,000 awarded by the Giant Eagle Foundation to stand up against racism to build and strengthen work with various critical community resources. We committed $125,000 to various Urban League chapters across the five states we serve, directing those funds to help provide life’s essentials too so many impacted by the pandemic as well as toward efforts to help those seeking employment and professional growth. We committed another $125,000 to invest in growing Black leaders and Black-owned businesses through organizations such as The Advanced Leadership Initiative, the POISE Foundation, and the Cleveland Foundation’s Cleveland Black Future Fund. Lastly, we continue to engage our Team Members on various donation opportunities to lift the Black community or otherwise fight racism and promote equality through our $100,000 donation match effort.

While we are all happy to see the chapter known as 2020 close, we are inspired by the opportunities that 2021 brings with it. And we look forward to building on the strong foundation we believe we put in place this year.

Standing Up Against Racism: The Time for Action is Now


A message from our President and CEO, Laura Shapira Karet
Published 6/10/2020

It is impossible to understand all the senseless deaths of African Americans, including George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and too many others whose stories have been pulled into the national spotlight, as well as the countless victims whose stories go untold. We at Giant Eagle have taken time to self-reflect on what we as individuals and as an organization must do to stand up against racism and social injustice. Words are important, but they are not nearly enough. The time for action is now.

At Giant Eagle, we have begun a series of efforts that we hope will allow us and others to support our African American Team Members, guests and neighbors. The company and the Giant Eagle Foundation have partnered to contribute $350,000 to support social justice causes. Additionally, all our Giant Eagle, Market District and GetGo locations will be closed between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. this Saturday, June 13, so we can begin to engage our Team Members in a discussion about our personal experiences and what steps can be taken to affect change in ourselves and in our communities.

In western Pennsylvania, we have also made the decision to halt sales of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette due to recent actions by the publication. It is critical that we uphold the values that have defined Giant Eagle for nearly 90 years. These measures will remain in place until the publication demonstrates an equal commitment to all those in the communities it serves.

We must take every opportunity to put ourselves in each other’s shoes. We will slip up. We will make mistakes. But as long as we are open, honest and sincerely listen to one another, we will make positive, long-lasting change.

Laura Shapira Karet,
President & Chief Executive Officer
Giant Eagle, Inc.


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