Fostering Inclusive, Equitable, and Resilient Communities
Our Response to the Dual Crises
An emphasis on durable social fabric, including a healthy, diverse, engaged, and fairly compensated staff as well as proactive support and engagement with our local community, was a material factor in our financial success before the crisis — and will become even more so in the future. Below is a summary of the actions we have taken to support our employees and our communities in response to the coronavirus pandemic and the protests across the country in the wake of the killing of George Floyd.
Actions to Support our Employees during the Pandemic
- Early on in the crisis, we moved quickly to a remote workforce (including providing funds to set up home offices) to ensure the health, safety, and productivity of our team
- We distributed a $1,000 cash bonus to assist all non-executive team employees and their families during the pandemic.
- We are providing Employee Assistance Plan (EAP) services through our benefits partner, which includes counseling services and access to other resources to help our staff navigate and solve health, financial, and other personal problems that may arise.
- We are finding creative ways to manifest our culture remotely to support each other’s emotional, mental, and physical well-being. This approach includes a range of employee engagement activities, including virtual happy hours, book club, knitting club, lunch and learns, health and wellness challenges, parent support groups.
- We are sponsoring and participating in the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s inaugural Walk the Watershed challenge, which provides a unique opportunity for our team and their families to safely exercise, explore local ecosystems, and connect with the restorative power of nature – all while raising funds to support CBF’s critical work to save the bay.
Actions to Support COVID-19 Vulnerable Populations
- In April 2020, we donated $150,000 to COVID-19 relief efforts in Maryland to relieve the widespread impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting gaps in community services The funds distributed to three separate charities (Maryland Food Bank, YWCA of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County, Annapolis Lighthouse) are helping address rising food insecurity by bolstering Maryland food banks dealing with increased demand for their services; aid the growing number of domestic violence victims in Anne Arundel County; and expand access to homeless support and prevention programs in Annapolis.
- In parallel with a corporate donation, we launched a charitable matching program of $1,000 per employee to community support charities of their choice.
Actions to Address Systemic Racism
- Our June 2, 2020, our Chairman and CEO Jeff Eckel sent a letter to all employees, which we also released publicly in order to condemn systemic racism and police brutality in America, and express our unequivocal solidarity with our black employees and the black community.
- Our immediate actions have and will include convening listening sessions to provide a platform for sharing experiences; holding learning sessions to understand how and where all of us can be constructive allies and advocates; and expanding our charitable giving match by another $1,000 per employee for donations made to organizations confronting racial and economic injustice, voter suppression, and other civil rights violations.
- We are also considering a strategic corporate donation to local and/or national groups confronting the above issues in the coming weeks.