EquityReportCard - The Drake
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    In June 2020, we made several public commitments to guide our equity initiatives. In addition to these commitments, our intention is to remain transparent and accountable to our employees, our guests, partners and community as we work towards a more inclusive culture. It is paramount that we ensure our environment is one where our employees thrive, all guests experience a warm welcome, and everyone feels safe from racism, discrimination, and harassment in our spaces.  We have been investing time and resources in new programs, policies, and training sessions focused on building our internal capacity and on deepening our commitment to being an organization that always represents the shared values of the communities we serve. This report serves to provide an update on our Diversity and Inclusion initiatives and what we are focused on next as we strive to improve and to build a team that fully represents our unique community of doers and dreamers.

    The first step for us was acknowledging that we want to do better with respect to addressing racism, specifically anti-Black racism, and inclusivity concerns within our organization. In June 2020, we contacted the KOJO Institute, a leading Diversity, Inclusion and Equity Consultancy group based in Toronto, to seek guidance on what we needed to learn, and how to we could take action. In partnership with Kike Ojo-Thompson, Principal, and the KOJO Institute team, we worked to establish immediate and long-term priorities to guide us to becoming a better equity-informed and anti-racist hospitality company. Here are some of the steps we have taken to inform our plan:

    • Launched the discovery processes within The Drake’s senior leadership team and the KOJO Institute [July 2020]
    • Deployed an internal audit of critical/relevant policies [August-September 2020].
    • Engaged in a senior team Visioning and Commitment process meeting where we formalized our accountability to this process [September 2020].
    • Hosted a management group Town Hall meeting that introduced our teams across all properties to the work we were embarking on with the KOJO Institute [September 2020].
    • Held employee focus groups with management, front-line, and Black-identified staff [October-December 2020]
    • Conducted a survey with former team members [November 2020].
    • Issued a company-wide mandate for EDI education + training programs for all team members and management [March 2021, ongoing].
    • Formalized and shared our Code of Conduct with Drake staff, guests, vendors, partners and collaborators [September 2021] 
    • Instituted a comprehensive Anti-Racism policy and procedure training for all staff [October 2021] 
    • Partnered with an anonymous third-party incident reporting hotline [October 2021] 
    • Hosted hospitality industry-specific anti-racism training for all Drake staff in partnership with Black In Hospitality [June 2022 + October 2022]
    • HR Leadership Diversio Certification completed [August 2022]
    • Partnered with Waaseayaa Consulting to create a land acknowledgement that meaningfully recognizes the land on which our properties reside [November 2022, ongoing]
    • Launched Annual Employee Survey in partnership with Diversio [Fall 2022] 
    • Not 9 To 5 Mental Health Training extended to all staff and CNCTed Certification to Managers [Fall 2023]

    We believe that work and learning are never-ending and we are committed to it. The steps undertaken thus far have allowed us to begin to chart our course towards positive and important change. It is our honest goal to promote and offer values-driven hospitality. To be a company that better reflects the perspectives of our stakeholders and the communities we serve by ensuring those values are shared at all levels of our company. Below are some of our current and immediate priorities and deliverables:

    Education + Training: Ensure all management and team members understand their roles and responsibilities in creating a harassment and discrimination-free environment by hosting multiple educational and training sessions throughout the year [ongoing].

    Policies + Procedures: A formal review of our workplace harassment, violence, and discrimination policies, complaints procedures, and performance management policies is currently taking place. Each policy is being examined and updated with a focus on where and how equity is enabled, along with establishing a formal anti-racism policy [May 2021 and ongoing].

    Recruitment + Representation: As we continue to build our teams, a focus on hiring within Black, Indigenous and People of Colour communities has been put into practice by expanding our recruiting platforms with new recruiting partners, and by creating internal development and leadership opportunities for Black, Indigenous and People of Colour [ongoing].

    Communities: We have established The Drake Black Community Council whose mandate is to provide the oversight and accountability required to encourage our continuing equity work. These are socially committed and deeply-rooted community activists and connectors, who are helping us inform our perspectives and navigate organizational evolution [June 2021 and ongoing].

    Drake Art, Culture + Programming: We are dedicated to growing our platform to celebrate and amplify the voices of artists and performers while encouraging dialogue, learning and inclusivity. We will continuously revisit and learn what it means to be a safe space for programming, one that includes representation from women, the  LGBTQ2+ community, and people of colour [ongoing].

    Equity-Informed Mindset: A never-ending commitment to continually improving, while addressing any disparities within our organization in order to create a shared-values platform for all stakeholders. This mindset is focused and invested in understanding how different groups are accessing and experiencing our brand including our team members, guests, neighbours, art and culture collaborators, suppliers and partners [ongoing].

    We will continue to update this page as we move forward on this journey together, inclusive of sharing progress on our upcoming programs and initiatives such as reworking our annual employee survey to help us set benchmarks for our Diversity goals and providing transparency to our stakeholders through the formal, public dissemination of this report card annually. [September 2021 and ongoing].

    As we learn from the past, take action in the present and look towards the future, we promise to do and be better. We vow to support matters of equity, diversity and inclusivity. Our goal is to be a values-driven hospitality organization with an intentional sense of courage, conviction, and compassion, and one that you are proud to support.