As calls for racial justice escalated around the world this summer, one UK-based company that made statements regarding its role in systemic racism was Lloyd’s Of London, described as an insurance and reinsurance market formed by the Lloyd’s Act 1871. The market began as a shop where mariners and merchants would convene to secure insurance — including for slaves and slave ships. In June, Lloyd’s acknowledged these ties to the global slave trade and promised to make recompense. A month later, they received a list of demands from none other than T.I., whose plan was to hold the company accountable to its commitment to change.
Firing off — and sharing on his social media — an open letter to Lloyd’s with a list of ways to make restoration for its past actions, T.I. told the company “on behalf of ‘The Descendants’ of African Slaves,” that “we demand equitable financial consideration for the ‘shameful role’ they played in the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade.” Now, a little under a month removed from sending his open letter, T.I.’s Chief of Staff has received a response, sharing it via email with Uproxx.
“We cannot unfortunately undo the past,” it reads. “But we would like to play an active role in trying to level the playing field for Black and Minority Ethnic people in today’s world. On 10 June we announced an initial action plan that focuses on education, research and significant funding for charities and other organisations that promote opportunity and inclusion for Black and Minority Ethnic colleagues. There is much more to do and we will work with our Cultural Advisory Group to determine our longer term plans.”