5 Biggest News Stories of the Week: November 17

As the saying goes, the news never stops — but there’s a lot of it out there, and all of it doesn’t always pertain to our readers. In this weekly news roundup, we’ll cover the top news stories that matter most to our diversity focused audience.

1. Recession-Proofing DEI Departments Amid Tech Layoffs

The latest wave of layoffs at some of the biggest tech companies has disproportionately affected human resources and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) departments. 

There’s still speculation as to why these jobs are often first to go when it comes to layoffs, but it often comes down to these roles not being considered as essential and companies not acknowledging the importance of DEI. 

In a recent DiversityInc Best Practices Article, Senior Business Reporter Linda Bell dug into 5 ways to recession-proof your DEI strategy:

  1. Embed DEI in essential work
  2. Recognize accomplishments
  3. Tap DEI champions
  4. Continuing focusing on workers 
  5. Acknowledge the importance of DEI

Subscribe to DiversityInc Best Practices to read the full article. 

2. H1B Visa Holders Given 60 Days to Find a Job

Layoffs at tech giants such as Twitter, Meta, Salesforce and others have also created a difficult situation for H1B visa holders as they have a 60-day grace period to find a new job to keep their visa status or change to a different visa status. 

An H1B visa is a non-immigrant work visa that allows employers in the U.S. to hire foreign workers for specialty jobs, some of which fall in the tech industry. Finding a job within 60 days of being laid off is extremely difficult for these workers given there are many fake job postings on the internet. 

To help these workers find jobs and keep their visa status, people in groups on platforms such as WhatsApp are creating a place where community members can share jobs that are real with employers that are actively hiring. A 60-day grace period site has also been launched to help people find H1B jobs. 

3. Racist Abuse Forces HBCU Volleyball Team to Withdraw From Tournament

The women’s volleyball team at historically Black college (HBCU) Talladega College quit its conference tournament in Alabama after a player received a “racially motivated picture” through a feature that allows nearby cell phones to transfer data at the Southern States Athletic Conference’s volleyball awards banquet in Montgomery. 

Details haven’t been released on what the image showed, but conference organizers described it as “vile and vicious.”

In a statement issued in support of the players’ actions, the college said the team left the banquet and quit the tournament. 

“We commend the women’s volleyball team. We celebrate them for their bravery. We honor them for their commitment to the founding principles of Talladega College as well as the tenants of diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Talladega College said. 

The President of the school, Gregory J. Vincent, said the conference is still investigating what happened. 

In a statement, the SSAC league said it would not “condone this type of behavior.”

4. The Retirement Race Gap: An Uncertain Future for People of Color

People of color often have lower participation rates and balances in retirement plans and are also more likely to invest in less risky assets that have lower returns and take hardship withdrawals and loans. These are all factors that contribute to the retirement race gap.

“It reflects an existing wealth gap in society – a racial wealth gap between Black and white. Retirement assets are one-way wealth is held similar to homeownership or other things,” says Chitra Aiyar, consultant at Just Futures and author of “Reclaiming Retirement for All,” a report that focuses on the challenges the non-profit sector faces around long-term retirement security.

To help people of color save for retirement, which experts say people need to save at least $1 million to live comfortably, education and awareness are needed to eliminate the retirement savings gap. Three strategies to improve retirement savings include automatic enrollment, automatic escalation and guaranteed contributions. 

5. Check Out the DiversityInc Job Board!

The DiversityInc Job Board is a great place for job seekers and recruiters to find jobs and the perfect candidates that encompass diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). 

It allows recruiters to find candidates by posting jobs that will be viewed by thousands and to receive candidate matches via email. And those looking to be recruited can post their resume and be found as well as receive daily job postings to their email inbox. 

Just this week, TIAA (No. 8 on DiversityInc’s 2022 Top 50 Companies for Diversity list) posted an opening for an Executive Vice President, Head of Technology Strategy & Transformation, to be located in its New York office. The role will be part of TIAA’s Client Services and Technology (CS&T) executive leadership team and will “be responsible to work with technology executives, senior experts, and a diverse set of stakeholders to modernize and scale solutions successfully affecting our transformational journey while maturing our practice within the TIAA organization thus transforming the core.” 

Visit the Job Board to learn more.

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