When They Come for Diversity, No One is Safe

Why the attack on inclusive policies and programs should concern everyone

Dr. Tiffany Jana
Momentum
Published in
6 min readSep 16, 2023

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Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

I’ve been leading and designing diversity, equity, and inclusion programs for over two decades. Unlike countless new entrants to the field, my team and I have traversed this terrain for ages. I have long believed that the workplace is the biggest learning laboratory we have outside of formal educational settings. I’ve witnessed epic transformations of hearts, minds, cultures, and policies in companies and communities the world over. The workplace learning laboratory that once compensated where good home training lacked is under attack, and we are all in danger.

My interpretation of the discipline of diversity was informed by my esteemed mother, a highly respected change agent who has ascended to the apex of the inclusion industry where behavioral psychology and diversity intersect. She’s been at it since the 1980’s. I took what she learned and transformed it into a metrics-driven methodology that quantifies diversity ROI and facilitates sustainable change for organizations and communities around the world.

As a sector and industry-agnostic practice, TMI Consulting, Inc. has touched Fortune 500s, universities, federal and municipal governments, small businesses, startups, B Corps, and nonprofits. It’s been an incredible journey, and the deeper an organization allows my team to go, the better their results over time.

The shift

2020 marked a critical inflection point in the diversity industry. The focus on Black Lives Matter after George Floyd’s murder rapidly accelerated the demand for Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) services. The J for justice was a necessary addition to DEI in response to the urgency of the crescendo. Some folx took the call seriously, others engaged in blatant Blackwashing.

Countless would-be practitioners flooded the space, and business was booming for established and novice consultants alike. Companies added equity positions and titles left and right, paid and unpaid — and many of us believed a new day had dawned. I remained skeptical and satirically predicted the inevitable firing spree that would follow.

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Dr. Tiffany Jana
Momentum

Non-binary Top Writer in Diversity, Leadership, & Antiracism. Best-Selling Author, Pleasure Activist, B Corp Founder, TEDx, Inc.com Top 100 Speaker