Honoring the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

MLK Day

 

This year's Martin Luther King Jr. Day marks the 26th anniversary of the day of service that celebrates the Civil Rights leader's life and legacy. Observed each year in the U.S. on the third Monday in January as "a day on, not a day off," it represents an opportunity for us to honor the legacy of Dr. King by extending ourselves and giving back to the communities we serve, a value that is core to who we are as a company.

In the spirit of Dr. King's life's work of fighting for civil rights, racial equity, social justice, and community service, we are proud to continue our partnership with the National Urban League. As a part of that partnership, Marc Morial, the organization's president, shared some words of wisdom on the importance of MLK day, civil liberties and volunteering. "Martin Luther King taught us not just to think, not just to dream, but to actualize those dreams to pick up the energy and commitment to racial and social justice. This is the challenge of now. The kind of nation and communities we want our children to live in depends on what we do now, on this issue, today."

Marc went on to discuss how we can honor Dr. King, stating "One way to sustain this movement is by giving back." It is with that same inspiration that we are encouraging our employees to use this new U.S. paid holiday to support communities through service projects across the nation, virtual learning sessions and volunteer activations in our 10 largest markets to provide necessities to communities most impacted by COVID-19. We are also encouraging our customers to join us on this day of service by going to NationalService.gov to find locally based volunteer opportunities and learning events.

We have a longstanding history and ongoing commitment to the communities we serve. Each year, our employees give nearly 200,000 hours of their time to give back to their communities and in partnership with our employee match fund, millions of dollars to hundreds of nonprofits across the U.S. and Canada. We announced in July that we will double our charitable giving to nonprofit organizations that promote anti-racism, bringing that total to approximately $1M per year.

Beyond just giving back, as a company, we are dedicated to improving the diversity of the brands we partner with. By the end of 2025 we are committed to delivering $500M in sales by brands owned, operated and designed by individuals of the Black community. Part of this work will be supported by our Supplier Diversity Program, which will track and support minority-owned suppliers across all areas of the business.

While Martin Luther King Jr. Day is celebrated to honor the legacy of one of the most significant civil rights leaders of our country's history, we must also use this time to reflect on our actions that honor him and his legacy, service, and leadership. As Marc mentioned, it is an opportunity to extend ourselves, learning something new and give back to the marginalized communities that have provided so much for all of us. We can also take this opportunity to participate in virtual learning sessions. These actions are just small steps towards a more inclusive company for our employees, customers, partners, and communities we serve.

For information around our charitable and community efforts, visit nordstromcares.com.