Help Tech Continue to Lead in Response to COVID-19

April 2, 2020

Across the county, public officials are responding to COVID-19 by issuing shelter-in-place orders. Here in the Bay, the order is being extended until at least May 1st. The reality of the COVID-19 pandemic has altered our daily lives, forcing us all to adjust to a new paradigm. We don’t know how long this level of uncertainty will last, but we do know it’s more important than ever to support our communities.

Tech has established itself as an early leader in responding to the pandemic. Recently, 25 Bay Area tech companies announced they would be joining forces to create a $22 million fund for organizations battling coronavirus. In addition, many tech companies announced they would continue paying service workers even if hours are reduced or offices are closed.

At TechEquity, we’ve been thinking about how tech companies can make the most impact in this time of crisis. A major way tech companies can ensure stability in our communities and economy is continuing to pay service workers while offices move to work from home policies. In partnership with Silicon Valley Rising, we’re asking tech companies to continue paying service workers. Our aim is to shine a light on companies taking early action to help.

To be successful, we need data on how tech companies are responding to COVID-19. If you work for a tech company and want to help, here’s what you can do:

  1. Please share if your company has committed to continue paying service workers. This includes food service, janitorial, shuttle drivers, security officers or any other hourly outsourced service vendor providing labor to your campus. Please share a blog post, press release or other announcements that outline their commitment by the end of this week.
  2. Or, let’s schedule a time to discuss what it would take to continue paying hourly workers at your company.

The tech industry employs tens of thousands of subcontracted workers that help the industry thrive. This includes service workers such as food service, janitorial, shuttle bus drivers, security officers, and others. Last year TechEquity announced a responsible contracting project. The goal of the project is to understand how tech companies evaluate the vendors they work with and how companies can implement a responsible contracting standard moving forward. In the wake of the novel coronavirus, tech companies are faced with an opportunity to demonstrate what equity looks like and support all the workers that help their business function.

No matter our circumstances, it’s time to pull together and support each other. We’re in this together. Keep an eye out for more about some of the amazing responses we’re seeing from our network in the coming weeks.