Like in all walks of life, equality, diversity, and inclusion are critical success factors for business organizations.
Each of us is unique in this world. Differences make us powerful and interesting. The more other people are different from us, the more we can benefit from their capability. However, despite this fact, we face a lot of discrimination in society and business organizations.
Discriminatory behaviour and harsh judgments particularly affect young people as they are not equipped to deal with consequences. For example, according to a scientific paper published on PMC (U.S. National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health), discrimination increases suicidal ideation in black adolescents regardless of ethnicity and gender.
New generations embrace diversity and inclusion. According to the AMP Global Youth organization, there are 5 Reasons Why Diversity is Important in the 21st Century. They are growing acceptance, diminishing discrimination, becoming a global citizen, hearing about another's experience, gaining richer life experience, and productivity. The mission of the organization is to amplify the power of youth to make change louder.
Linezero points out that gender diversity in the workplace is becoming a significant factor in many ways; not only does it help new employees determine whether or not they want to work for the organization in question, but there are several other positive effects that organizations can take advantage of if they make gender diversity in the workplace a priority.
The gender equality movement helps us challenge gender stereotypes, find ways to create a variety of voices, and promoting fairness in society and the workplace. Deloitte, advising thousands of financial services companies, shows us how prioritizing gender diversity and inclusion in leadership development and succession planning could improve outcomes.
After this background, I want to introduce a new initiative by Republic Bank in Kentucky in this article. Louisville-based Republic Bank launched True Name debit cards for customers. True Name debit cards allow customers to use their chosen names without the requirement of a legal name change. This initiative is implemented through a partnership with Mastercard.
The bank's website states that:
"You can proudly display your chosen name and present your true identity with the Republic Bank Mastercard Debit Card with the True Name feature on personal and business checking accounts. Because whether you are buying groceries or out with friends, you should always be accepted for who you truly are."
When I search why the Republic Bank introduced the True Name card, I found a powerful statement. "Research shows one-third of individuals whose I.D. has a name that doesn't match their gender presentation experience harassment and denial of service.1 True Name is a powerful way we can alleviate a source of anxiety for our clients and deliver banking solutions that meet our clients' needs".
The point is gender representation causes harassment and denial of service. Strikingly, this issue is real, as confirmed by research and recognized by the bank. Notably, Republic Bank is one of only three banks currently offering a Mastercard debit card with True Name and the first community bank to launch this feature. Kentucky Society for Human Resource Management and the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce has selected Republic Bank as 2021 Best Places to Work. And it is in Forbes' America's Best Banks in Each State list.
The concerns for conservative banks are security. However, Republic Bank confirms that "We're continuing to uphold our same, high standards to validate our clients' identities and protect account access. Additionally, True Name personal and business debit cards continue to offer all security features that come standard with our card products."
As research indicates the importance of diversity and inclusion for society and business, like Republic Bank, we need to find pioneering ways to introduce diversity and inclusion to companies and communities.
Diversity is a particular concern for the financial sector and banking, as documented by The U.S. House Committee on Financial Services report on diversity and inclusion in finance.
Thank you for reading my perspectives.