Coca-Cola faces backlash for workplace inclusion materials encouraging employees to 'be less white'

The company said the leaked training material is part of an online learning series but "not a focus of our company's curriculum."

Published: February 22, 2021 11:09am

Updated: February 22, 2021 5:15pm

Coca-Cola is facing backlash after leaked online training material by a whistleblower shows employees were told that being "less white" means being "less arrogant, less certain, less defensive, less ignorant and more humble."

A company insider shared slideshow images of the material, which quickly spread over the internet Friday and throughout the weekend. The training slides explain that white people feel inherently superior and learn that being white is better at a very young age.

"In the U.S. and other Western nations, white people are socialized to feel that they are inherently superior because they are white," one of the slides read. "Research shows that by age 3 to 4, children understand that it is better to be white. ... Try to be less white."

A company spokesperson confirmed that the training is "part of a learning plan to help build an inclusive workplace" but also clarified that "the video circulating on social media is from a publicly available LinkedIn Learning series and is not a focus of our company's curriculum."

Conservative activists were quick to call out the company for what some feel is racism and hate toward white people.

"If a corporate company sent around a training kit instructing black people how to 'be less black', the world would implode and lawsuits would follow. I genuinely hope these employees sue @CocaCola for blatant racism and discrimination," Candace Owens tweeted.

"The inference here is clear, isn't it? That white is bad; white means supremacist; white means you look down your noses at everybody else; white means you are guilty!," British reform leader Nigel Farage commented on the training material.

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