Anna Wintour has made some important and painful revelations about race, work culture, harmful content and changes that need to be made at the fashion magazine she's edited since 1988.
Page Six reports that in the wake of George Floyd's May 25 death at the hands of white police officers — a tragedy that's sparked protests, riots and a huge national conversation about systemic racism — the famed fashion editor sent what the New York Post's gossip column describes as an "emotional" note to Vogue's staff on June 4 in which she admits the magazine hasn't done enough to promote black staff, designers and creators and has published content that's "hurtful and intolerant."
"I want to start by acknowledging your feelings and expressing my empathy towards what so many of you are going through: sadness, hurt, and anger too," Anna began the letter. "I want to say this especially to the Black members of our team — I can only imagine what these days have been like. But I also know that the hurt, and violence and injustice we're seeing and talking about have been around for a long time. Recognizing it and doing something about it is overdue.
"I want to say plainly that I know Vogue has not found enough ways to elevate and give space to Black editors, writers, photographers, designers and other creators. We have made mistakes too, publishing images or stories that have been hurtful or intolerant," wrote Anna, who's also served as the artistic director for Vogue's publisher, Condé Nast, since 2013. "I take full responsibility for those mistakes."
She continued, per Page Six, "It can't be easy to be a Black employee at Vogue, and there are too few of you. I know that it is not enough to say we will do better, but we will — and please know that I value your voices and responses as we move forward. I am listening and would like to hear your feedback and your advice if you would like to share either."
Anna then doubled down on her pledge to listen. "I am proud of the content we have published on our site over these past few days but I also know that there is much more work to do," she wrote. "Please don't hesitate to be in touch with me directly. I am arranging ways we can discuss these issues together candidly, but in the meantime, I welcome your thoughts or reactions.
"This is a historic and heartbreaking moment for our country and it should be a time of listening, reflection and humility for those of us in positions of privilege and authority," she added. "It should also be a time of action and commitments. On a corporate level, work is being done to support organizations in a real way. These actions will be announced as soon as possible."