Twitter hits most of its 2016 diversity goals

Twitter hits most of its 2016 diversity goals

SAN FRANCISCO — Twitter’s U.S. workforce is still predominantly white and Asian, but the tech firm said Thursday that it’s made some progress and hit most of its diversity goals in 2016.

The company’s latest diversity disclosure — its third since 2014 — comes as the federal government has cracked down with legal action against other Bay Area technology companies for alleged discriminatory hiring or compensation practices.

Tech companies in the region face increasing pressure to diversify their overwhelmingly white, male workforces. Companies such as Google, Facebook and others have released annual diversity reports, which have shown little progress in hiring women and minorities.

“For 2016, we sought to push ourselves in a distinguishing way and set measurable goals, and we’re happy to share that we’ve met or surpassed many of these,” said Jeffrey Siminoff, Twitter’s vice president of diversity and inclusion, in a blog post about the topic.

But Twitter’s goals were modest, and with diversity still lagging at the tech firm, some advocacy groups called on the company to do more.

“To its credit, Twitter has set and met many of its goals. But going forward and just days after Dr. King’s birthday, it’s clear that a new revolution (in) thinking is needed to accelerate the move toward race equality and economic justice in the tech industry,” said the Rev. Jesse Jackson, the founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, in a statement. “Goals must be more aggressive so that companies reach parity with populations and communities in which they reside.”

Twitter said its U.S. workforce last year was about 57 percent white and 32 percent Asian. The percentage of black employees increased from 2 percent to 3 percent from 2015 to 2016, but the percentage of Hispanic, multi-racial, American Indian and Native Hawaiian workers remained the same.


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