In light of the outrageous spike in overt acts of racism against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, I want to pause to recall Audible’s collective purpose is to “protect inherent civil rights,” as articulated in our People Principles, as we stand together to denounce anti-Asian racism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance. This message echoes sentiments previously articulated by our CFO Cynthia Chu during our Lunar New Year event and by CEO Bob Carrigan in his most recent email to employees.
No one should be subject to slurs for speaking their native language on the subway or fear that their parents will be violently attacked while walking down the street. But these are realities and growing concerns as anti-Asian hate crimes and racist incidents, including physical assault, refusal of service, workplace discrimination and other insidious forms of anti-Asian bias, have risen precipitously as our society’s capacity for scapegoating and threatening the rights and lives of others exceeds all definitions of civility.
As I wrote last summer, our commitment to “celebrate the glories of the human spectrum,” “protect inherent civil rights” and pursue equality as a core purpose “underlie our commitment to our colleagues as we build a shared sense of safety and belonging in our workplace, and they inspire our mission to elevate marginalized voices.” Beyond statements of purpose, we have tried to inspire via deputizing all employees and investing in powerful content to lead and change the thinking of millions, and I hope each of you feels empowered to help us take action too.
The spectrum of experiences that compose our Asian and Asian-American community — nearly one-third of our U.S. employee base, along with many others in APAC — are worthy of deep celebration, as are our Originals and Studios productions by Asian and Pacific creators: Madhuri Shekar’s Evil Eye, Viet Thanh Nguyen’s The Committed, Given Away, Vimi Bajaj’s Nadine, Yo-Yo Ma’s upcoming Words + Music production and many others. We will continue to build and elevate “Hear My Story” titles, hopefully with an intensified focus on voices that surface the different realities across the proud diversity of people everywhere who identify as Asian.
And I wish I didn’t have to restate this, but I will. We will stand behind any employee whose civil rights or dignity is challenged in any way we can, so please, if there are any members of the Audible family who have been exposed to unacceptable behavior because of who you are, reach out to me, Bob Carrigan or Chief People Officer Anne Erni personally so we can help.