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Collective of CEOs offering a million jobs to Black people

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Posted at 5:00 PM, Apr 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-15 19:17:45-04

CLEVELAND — A brand new initiative is preparing to take flight and it has the potential to change the outcome for families across this country looking for good-paying jobs.

A Cleveland company was one of the first to jump on board with the plan that will help a million after the summer of “Racial Reckoning.”

The deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery struck a long-neglected nerve in the country that could no longer be ignored.

As people of all backgrounds took to the streets demanding social justice and equality for Black people, several CEOs of major Fortune 500 Companies were putting their heads together.

Out of this pain, a new initiative was born called "One Ten."

The companies decided, what do we have that we can use as our most powerful tool? Well, guess what? It's good jobs,” says the newly hired CEO of One Ten, Maurice Jones.

The nationwide effort aims to provide a million jobs for Black people over the next 10 years.

“This the largest private sector commitment like this that I have seen anywhere," Jones said.

So far, nearly 50 companies and corporations have stepped forward to pledge millions in money, resources, and jobs.

Companies like Nike, Nordstrom, Delta, Johnson and Johnson, Lowes, Target, IBM, and Walmart.

The jobs they’ll be offering, will not require college degrees.

"In our country, 60 percent of our workforce right now doesn't have a four-year degree. In the Black community, it's 78 percent. The American dream, the middle class has to be accessible for all if we're going to have a more perfect union,” said Jones.

So what about the pay?

It’s described as “family-sustaining wages,” which is well above minimum wage.

Jones told NEWS 5, in Cleveland, that number is somewhere between $49,000- $58,000 a year.

"Transformative for those individuals getting those jobs.”

Another one of those companies making this commitment is a household name here in Cleveland.

“They can work in the area as surgical techs, phlebotomy, some entry-level roles in finance,” said Kelly Hancock, Cleveland Clinic Chief Caregiver Officer.

“Helps our communities get stronger, healthier.”

Right now the One Ten project is in the early stages of putting together all the pieces to make these million jobs a reality.

Jones believes the non-profit will reach its million job goal for Black people, before the 10-year mark.

“The clock starts in June, really. But from my standpoint, the clock has already started.”

Cleveland Clinic is one of the founding members of One Ten.

They plan to recruit Black talent through partnerships with local community colleges and community organizations—like the NAACP and the Urban League.

For more information about how to get connected with One Ten click here.