Gulf Coast Minority Chamber of Commerce Calls on
Local Government and Business to Increase Diversity
Jim Little, Pensacola News Journal
Published 12:30pm CT Apr. 9, 2019
PENSACOLA, FL- The Gulf Coast Minority Chamber of Commerce is issuing a challenge to local governments and businesses to become more diverse and inclusive. Brian Wyer, President of the Gulf Coast Minority Chamber of Commerce announced the new initiative dubbed " I Love Diverse Cities" at a press conference Monday at Pensacola City Hall. Wyer said he's noticed a trend of organizations losing diversity on boards and in leadership positions. "When we loose that diversity, what we lose is the ability to see multiple perspectives," Wyer said.
Wyer said he wants to use the initiative to increase awareness of the need for diversity in local government and business, but also to help minority-owned businesses become more aware of the business opportunities available from local governments.
Wyer said he wants to do that by creating a "diversity matrix" for businesses and governments to come up with a diversity "scorecard." "I've heard from
numerous leaders in our community that their companies have been perceived as the old white guys that live in the office up here, and they're trying to break some of those things down in ways, both for their own business needs but for the fact of getting diverse opinions and perspectives," Wyer said.
As part of the initiative, Wyer will also look into local government procurement and how well each local government is doing in reaching out to minority-owned businesses. "We need to be more comfortable talking about the uncomfortable," Wyer said.
Jim Little can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and 850-208-9827.