03 Feb The State of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Fashion as released by CFDA + PVH.
As we rapidly approach the end of the first week of Black History Month, we reflect on this extremely important time of the year, and the tragic and senseless acts of racial injustice in 2020 – including every life lost at the hands of racism in the United States and the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color.
The Council of Fashion Designers of America, Inc. (CFDA) has partnered with PVH Corp., formerly known as the Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation, which is an American clothing company that owns brands such as Van Heusen, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, IZOD, Arrow, Warner’s, Olga, True & Co., and Geoffrey Beene. The company also licenses brands such as Kenneth Cole New York and Michael Kors. At the beginning of February, the duo collectively released The State of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Fashion Report, a definitive work of research, that also suggests the next steps to drive toward representative and equitable workplaces throughout the American fashion industry. Through this study, they seek to emphasize the experiences of Black employees and industry voices, and other underrepresented, underserved, and underprivileged communities across all industry disciplines and levels. Related themes such as allyship and intersectionality are also thoroughly explored. It is their hope, that this research serves as the evidence of our industry’s issues, but also as the proof that steps to progress and equity are achievable at every level, no matter your individual or organizational resources.
This important work is built on a joint mission to advocate for measurable change, which CFDA and PVH began to collaborate on in 2018. The co-authored 2019 Industry/Outsider: Inclusion & Diversity in the American Fashion Industry briefing serves as a foundation and framework for progress.
“We are grateful for PVH’s continued partnership with the CFDA, which allows us to address important needs within American fashion. With the study’s findings and toolkit, we look to industry stakeholders to support us in creating an industry that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive,” said Steven Kolb, CEO of the CFDA.
This analysis draws on a McKinsey & Company survey of over 1,000 working industry professionals across 41 companies, 20 stakeholder interviews, and three focus groups with students and emerging designers. This research was conducted over the fall of 2020 after considerable development and planning.
“The inclusion and diversity challenges in the fashion industry are real. This important research not only confirms that but the learnings from it will help guide the work towards positive and lasting change,” said Stefan Larsson, CEO of PVH Corp. “We have work to do at PVH, and together with our larger industry have a collective responsibility to lean in and drive real impact. This is as important as any business strategy and speaks more broadly to who we are as human beings and the impact we can have on society.”
The CFDA and PVH identified six key areas of opportunity: awareness, access, promotion, advocacy, compensation and belonging. Each of these areas is thoroughly explored and accompanied by data insights, personal narratives, and steps for intervention.
“The fashion industry, both in the U.S. and worldwide, has historically struggled with opportunities and pipelines for Black and Brown talent. We need to collectively address and change this. Our work with PVH will hasten the process and is key to CFDA’s overall DEI work around our IMPACT initiative, launching later this month to identify, connect, support, and nurture Black and Brown creatives and professionals in fashion,” said CaSandra Diggs, President of the CFDA.
For the full report, click here.
Photo Provided by CFDA
CFDA would like to extend a special thank you to the McKinsey & Company team for their hard work and dedication to this study. We deeply appreciate the contributions of Stacey Haas, Pamela Brown, Emily Gerstell, Genevieve Ang, Leonie Badger, Katie Boys, Stefon Burns, Harshit Gupta, and Sanjana Gupta.
CFDA thanks PVH for being an exemplary partner on this joint effort, and for helping to make this important work a reality through their steadfast commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Original Story Written By Joseph Corchado Maglieri