Faith Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are rapidly growing in number as major American corporations realize that their Diversity, Equity and Inclusion programs are leaving out a major stakeholder group among their employees – people for whom religious beliefs are central to their identity. Our partner, the Religious Freedom and Business Foundation, is the leading promoter of such DEI groups and provides a valuable metric in their annual Corporate Religious Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (REDI) Index.
After going virtual in 2021, this year’s Annual National Faith ERG Conference for leaders and supporters of such DEI groups is meeting again in Washington, DC at Catholic University’s Busch School of Business, on May 23-25. Registration is now open.
And just as last year, AI&F is again highlighting how AI ethics can be a valuable focal point for integrating faith and work among faith-oriented tech creators. This year’s panel will focus not only on the opportunity for tech workers to determine their own ethical positions and relate them to their employers’ ethics programs, but also on how AI technology can provide great opportunities for service. Next month we will announce the Gold Level corporate sponsor and members of our panel.
We are supporting Faith ERGs in two other ways as well.
First, we are delighted to get connected with Marsie Sweetland, founder of Faith Connect at Equinix. Marsie will be moderating our panel at the National Conference and is a leader not only at Equinix’ Faith Connect but also among Faith ERGs at other companies. Marsie will join Google Inter Belief Network leaders Barbara Phillips and Naomi Krause in this online conversation sponsored by RFBF on March 3 at 9 am Pacific Time on Building Allyship and Collaboration among faith networks in Big Tech.
Second, we understand that Microsoft is edging closer to the creation of their Faith ERG after several years of planning. We’re reaching out through our AI&F faith leader Advisors at Jewish, Muslim and Christian houses of worship near Microsoft, as well as to leaders of eastern faith traditions at Microsoft to explore ways our own expert community can support this new umbrella DEI group at Microsoft. Given Microsoft’s industry leading AI ethics process called Aether – studied by several of our partner organizations with funding from Microsoft – we are especially interested in working to build a bridge across faith traditions and into the Microsoft ethics team, for members of the new Faith ERG who are interested in AI ethics.