S&P 100 companies committing to diversity and racial equality should back that up with action that includes sharing annual EEOC reports, New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer urged the CEOs of 67 companies in a letter sent Wednesday.
Mr. Stringer sent the letter on behalf the New York City Employees' Retirement System, Teachers Retirement System of the City of New York and New York City Board of Education Retirement System — which have a collective $150 billion in assets. Mr. Stringer serves as investment adviser, custodian and trustee of the pension funds.
"It is not enough to condemn racism in words; systemic change in corporate America will require concrete action and accountability. We're asking companies that issued statements in support of racial justice to walk the walk and publicly disclose the demographics of their employees by race, gender, and ethnicity — including in their leadership and senior management. This information is crucial for shareowners to better understand diversity and workforce practices and identify areas for growth. Companies are stronger and deliver better value when they are inclusive and representative, and the CEOs of these leading companies should take direct action to match their words," Mr. Stringer said in a statement.
The letter sent to companies that already do not already file the reports with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission asks for a written commitment by Aug. 30 that the company will publicly disclose the information in its 2021 EEOC report.
Mr. Stringer also encouraged them to voluntarily include pay data, which is not being collected by the EEOC.
The EEOC report will help investors evaluate companies' performance in terms of ability to hire, retain, and promote employees of color and women, and could also help companies benchmark their own data to peers and help boards oversee human capital management practices, he said.
"If a company is unresponsive, we may consider submitting shareholder proposals or factoring it in our evaluations of director nominees standing for re-election at the next annual shareholder meeting," the letter said.