Abstract: Black Power's Confrontation with Kodak: The New Corporate Responsibility
In 1966, the FIGHT organization—a newly created Black Power entity—demanded that the Eastman Kodak Company, headquartered in Rochester, NY, hire and then train 600 "hard-core unemployed." Kodak, a Fortune 500 company that had avoided unionization and labor negotiations for more than eighty years, politely declined FIGHT's proposal. The demand and subsequent refusal sparked a year-long struggle, the likes of which the business world had never seen. Enlisting the support of Black Power activists, national church bodies, and the media, FIGHT pioneered and waged a shareholder's proxy strategy that forced Kodak to the bargaining table. In the process, FIGHT rewrote the rules of corporate responsibility.