28+ Sample Diversity and Inclusion Statement

What Is a Diversity and Inclusion Statement?

A diversity and inclusion statement is an official statement that reinforces the acceptance of people from all walks of life in a professional environment. The statement may target broader objectives, but applies especially to a company’s hiring process or workforce. A diversity and inclusion statement’s aim is to express commitment towards upholding diversity and inclusivity as workplace values. 

According to an online article by Forbes, only 3.2% of senior leadership positions are held by Black people, when Black Americans account for 12.5% of the US population. Hispanics make up around 18.3% of the nationwide population, but just 4% of Hispanics are company executives. These statistics show that the top tier in the US corporate world is still overwhelmingly white. For millennials, who now make up the majority of the workforce, 75% believe that a company is more innovative when they are able to cultivate a culture of diversity and inclusion. And when it comes to weighing employment options, around 67% of job hunters consider diversity to be a major factor in their decision-making.    

Why Should Companies Have a Diversity and Inclusion Statement? 

The examples listed below are just some compelling reasons to incorporate a diversity and inclusion statement in the workplace. An important question to ask is, why is it important for companies and organizations to include this type of statement in their policies?

It promotes unity: The saying that differences make you stronger can be duly applied to this situation. Humanity is a broad spectrum of race, class, ideology, belief, cultures, and practices. Having a statement that acknowledges this and uses it as a force for good can promote positive benefits in the workplace. It’s important to recognize that differences are not a hindrance but instead, can be used to bring people together. The very idea of inclusion suggests that nobody should be left out, especially on the basis of secondary characteristics such as gender or race. The only primary characteristic that should matter is the common humanity that all people share. It values openness and acceptance: A diversity and inclusion statement can be a reassuring thing for people who feel that they are the minority. It is the responsibility of the company or organization to promote a healthy and accepting work environment that welcomes people from all backgrounds. If there is an air of openness and acceptance, then minorities can worry less about being treated differently or unfairly. Being treated with acceptance will give not just an individual, but an entire group, the freedom and incentive to do good work. It may even allow them to thrive in the workplace and contribute more to the organization. It reinforces values and principles: Similar to a vision or mission statement, a diversity and inclusion statement reinforces the core values of a company. What you choose to express in your statement only validates what your true principles and beliefs are. It does not matter if it is a personal commitment or a company statement, the words and ideas you choose will impact not only your customers and employees, but all stakeholders. If your company values equality and fairness, then your diversity and inclusion statement should be able to reflect that. Language matters and words hold power. Choosing the right words will set the tone and dynamic of workplace interaction. It’s adaptive to changing times: Keeping up with the changing beliefs and attitudes of people is vital not just in terms of survival, but in terms of growth. If one remains closed to new ideas, he or she runs the risk of becoming narrow-minded and callous. In evolution theory, only those who are able to adapt stand the highest chance of survival. This notion can be applied to human behavior and mindsets as well. Ideas shape society in the same way society shapes people. As more and more people adopt certain frameworks and new ways of thinking, so should a company remain open to change and reform. Diversity has been a hot topic in recent decades and people have only scratched the surface of a much needed conversation. If companies and organizations intend to keep up with the times, then workplace attitudes should be adjusted and perspectives broadened.

What Makes a Good and Impactful Diversity and Inclusion Statement? 

How do you write an effective diversity and inclusion statement? It is not enough to sound convincing or persuasive, an element of authenticity should be felt as well. When writing your diversity and inclusion statement, try keeping in mind the following tips:   

Use Honesty: Honest and authentic statements deliver the most impact. It would help to acknowledge diversity and support it explicitly. As much as possible, you do not want to deny the existence of discrimination either. It is important for your inclusion statement to remain grounded in reality but at the same time still echo a tone that’s hopeful and positive. Many people can usually tell if a statement is genuine or not. So avoid sugarcoating your statement and instead come from a place of honesty and authenticity. Craft a Narrative: If you want a more authentic statement, speaking from personal experience may help. If you are crafting a personal diversity statement, it will have a much deeper meaning if you incorporate your own story to it. Never underestimate the power of a good narrative. People like having something to relate to. Stories and personal experiences add depth to your statement. In some way, it offers a more human and realistic dimension to your statement. Have an Attention-grabbing Headline: You can be creative with your statement however you want. There are no fixed rules on how a company can convey their diversity and inclusion statement. Similar to a title, you can include an interesting header or headline to capture the reader’s attention. A simple phrase or single sentence will suffice, as long as you use impactful language and words. Keep it Brief: You want to avoid lengthy statements. A few sentences should be enough. A short but potent diversity statement is more effective than a long statement that lacks depth. As much as possible, get straight to the point with your message. Avoid sugar coating or using unnecessary words and descriptions. The most effective inclusion statements are coherent yet concise. Be Specific: Although your diversity and inclusion statement should be concise, having an overly generalized statement can come off as generic. It might help to be specific especially when recognizing diversity. For instance, you can state that your company or organization remains committed to acknowledging people from any background. Proceed by enumerating characteristics usually targeted by systemic bias and prejudice. These include but are not limited to race, sex, sexual orientation, ethnicity, and income class.

How to Create a Diversity and Inclusion Statement

To create a diversity and inclusion statement, it may be helpful to use a ready-made template as a guide and reference. Choose any one of the available samples above then follow the step-by-step instructions below. 

Step 1: Choose Your Words Carefully

Language matters and it would be a huge mistake to underestimate the power of words. You want to be able to practice sensitivity and discretion in your statement. With a statement as brief as a diversity statement, you want to choose the right words that can act as the vehicle for your core message. Specific and action-oriented words can help add vigor and dynamism to your statement. Words like empowerment, mission, freedom, growth, and purpose are just some examples you can utilize. 

Step 2: Convey a Value-Laden Message

The core of your diversity and inclusion statement is the message. What do you want to convey to the reader? Is it one of support, hope and encouragement? A diversity and inclusion statement ought to be grounded in reality yet at the same time, full of hope. A good statement is a positive one that promotes values such as unity and tolerance. It is helpful to highlight the values that direct your company. 

Step 3: Be Direct to the Point

Because it ideally should be a brief statement, you want to maximize the limited number of words in your message. Be direct to the point and only include the key points you want to emphasize. Just like a company vision statement, the more straightforward, the better. To achieve this, it is important to select words that deliver the most impact and energy.  

Step 4: Keep the Statement Brief

Avoid lengthy, overly-drawn out paragraphs. If you decorate your diversity and inclusion statement with flowery or unnecessary words, it might distract the reader from fully comprehending the true essence of your statement. If your message hopes to emphasize equity and equality, state that explicitly without beating around the bush. If your company wholeheartedly accepts people based on merit alone-not by their family name or color of their skin- then by all means incorporate that in your statement.     

FAQs

How do you write a diversity and inclusion statement?

To write a diversity and inclusion statement, you first need to reflect on what your true values are. You need an honest and genuine evaluation of what values drive your company. Diversity and inclusion often revolve around principles like equality, equity, fairness, and tolerance. To create a diversity statement, you need to be able to express your commitment to these types of values.

How do you write a good inclusion statement?

A good inclusion statement is one that isn’t pretentious but rather, an honest and reflective message. It could be based on personal experience. Or it could be a simple yet strong commitment to inclusivity. What matters is that it stresses the importance of representation and expresses an air of willingness.

What are the four types of diversity?

According to an article by Alliant International University, the four types of diversity are internal diversity, external diversity, organizational diversity, and world view diversity.

Diversity and inclusion are two principles that are increasingly relevant today, compared to any other time in human history. These two ought to be highly prized in the workplace yet society has not yet fully confronted deeply entrenched systemic discrimination. Are you willing to move forward and wholeheartedly embrace diversity in your workplace? Personalize your own diversity and inclusion statement today by downloading a sample template above!