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Union Pacific Railroad is awarding $5.5 million in grants to 576 nonprofit organizations part of the Class I's Community Ties Giving Program.
Eighty-three percent of the money is going to “local organizations that align with UP’s civersity, equity and inclusion (DEI) values," UP officials said in a press release. An estimated 16 million people across the railroad's 23-state network will benefit from the grants, which were awarded based on the company's three top philanthropic priorities: safety, workforce development and community spaces. The grants range from $2,500 to $25,000 each.
Organizations receiving grants need to demonstrate their commitment to DEI values by 2023. UP views its goal of reaching 100% of DEI-aligned grants as a multiyear journey, officials said. The railroad is ready to help its partners create their own programs with capacity-building grants or DEI training, they said.
"These organizations improve the quality of life for millions day-in and day-out, including veterans, disabled individuals and people in underrepresented communities," said Scott Moore, UP's senior vice president and chief administrative officer.