YouTube Creates $100 Million Fund to Support Black Creators

CEO Susan Wojcicki - Getty - H 2020
Francois G. Durand/Getty Images

The platform will live-stream June 13 fundraiser 'Bear Witness, Take Action,' hosted by Keke Palmer and Common.

YouTube is launching a $100 million fund to support Black creators on its platform.

“At YouTube, we believe Black lives matter and we all need to do more to dismantle systemic racism,” YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki wrote in a Thursday morning blog post where she announced the multiyear fund “dedicated to amplifying and developing the voices of Black creators and artists and their stories.”

As part of the effort, the platform will live-stream fundraising event Bear Witness, Take Action on Saturday, June 13. Hosted by Common and Keke Palmer, the 90-minute special will feature YouTube creators, artists, public figures and activists including Jemele Hill, Soledad O’Brien, Patrisse Cullors, Roxane Gay, Prince EA, Baratunde Thurston and others participating in roundtable discussion, panels, musical tributes and more.

During the event, viewers will be encouraged to donate to the Equal Justice Initiative, to which YouTube has already committed $1 million in donations.

Bear Witness, Take Action is produced by SpringHill Entertainment, Fly on the Wall and Byron Phillips. Reginald Hudlin serves as executive producer and showrunner.

“The execution of George Floyd — and Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery — has led to unprecedented protests for racial justice in every part of our nation — and globally. And it started in part because 17-year-old Darnella Frazier defiantly and courageously recorded the video that has forced us all to confront what we were seeing and name it," said Malika Saada Saar, a civil and human rights lawyer and social impact human rights lead at YouTube. "Video can be a powerful human rights tool for bearing witness to injustice, and Bear Witness, Take Action will be part of that hope and urgent call for change.” 

YouTube will also shine a light on racial justice issues on its Spotlight channel during the month of June.

In addition to YouTube’s outward-facing efforts, Wojcicki said it will look inward and “examine how our policies and products are working for everyone — but specifically for the Black community — and close any gaps.” Further, she said YouTube would work to make sure Black creators and users are protected from hateful, bullying and white supremacist content.