On behalf of the fashion brand, Gucci, Dapper Dan has launched a $5 million initiative in hopes to regain the support of the Black community after the company’s recent “blackface” sweater scandal.
The new initiative, Gucci Changemakers, is a program that will help upcoming fashion gurus of color break into the fashion industry. Gucci has donated $5 million in funding, in partnership with other not-for-profit organizations around the country in cities like Miami, Atlanta, New York, Washington D.C., Houston, and L.A. to ensure its impact.
“We met with the CEO of Gucci in Harlem. I have seen real action towards the solutions we discussed, and I want to share them with you…,” Dan said of the initiative, in an Instagram post. Black designers and fashion professionals will be given new opportunities through these new initiatives. It’s imperative that we have opportunities to learn on a world-class level, and also have a seat at the table to say how we should be represented. Through our work together, Gucci is in a position to steer the overall industry toward becoming a better more inclusive one.”
While some felt this was a good start others said it’s time to fully support Black-owned fashion brands so the Black community can be respected and represented the right way.
Instagram user @ Adtm73 wrote, “Man, Gucci knew what they were doing when they made the sweater. I can’t give a pass on this one. African Americans have been giving out too many passes to say ‘oh, it’s okay’….Black people have buying power, influence, and style that we came here with way before Gucci was popular to wear. I give them no passes #DapperDan and wouldn’t wear Gucci if they paid.”
Will you continue to buy Gucci or are you giving Gucci up?
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#GucciChangemakers. Even more changes to come. #Harlem