The North Face Tells Customers To Pass DEI Course For Discount
07 September 2023, North Rhine-Westphalia, Cologne: Logo of the fashion label The North Face, a brand of the US company VF Corporation specializing in outdoor clothing. Photo: Horst Galuschka/dpa (Photo by Horst Galuschka/picture alliance via Getty Images)
Horst Galuschka/picture alliance via Getty Images

Outdoor outfitter The North Face is offering customers a 20% discount if they complete and pass a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) course.

The company launched the course, titled “Allyship in the Outdoors,” to teach customers about racial disparities in outdoor activities. It is roughly an hour long and is intended for people who work in the outdoor industry. Those who take the course from North America are ineligible for the discount, however.

“At The North Face, we believe in the power of exploration. As individuals, professionals and companies who share a love for the outdoors and exploration, we also have a responsibility to support spaces where everyone feels like they belong,” the course description says. “This 1-hour digital course is designed to foster a deeper understanding of the unique challenges that people of colour face when accessing the outdoors.”

“The course focuses on perspective of race and racism in Europe, and we acknowledge that the experiences of people of colour around the globe differs. It will also provide training and resources, through 4 interactive modules, to help you be a better ally and to make the outdoors a safer and more welcoming place for everyone,” the website adds.

The course walks through four modules on various aspects of racial diversity in outdoor activities, including lessons on “privilege” and how to handle accusations of being “woke.” The modules also include portions on what events, such as the death of George Floyd, can mean.

“Privilege can give us access to the outdoors – that means some people can enjoy advantages that they inherit from birth and/or accumulate over time,” the course says. “In this particular context, we refer to ‘white privilege’ meaning that your race and skin colour can give you access to the outdoors when others can be excluded because of historic, enduring racism and biases.”

The course says inequality in the racial makeup of those who participate in outdoor activities proves that barriers exist for minorities.

“There is no explicit policy that excludes people from the outdoors yet there are few people of colour. While there is no intent to exclude, the system in itself creates those barriers to participation,” the training says.


Those who want to get the 20%-off voucher must answer a series of multiple-choice questions on “allyship,” “privilege,” and other DEI topics correctly.

“To thank you for being an ally and completing the full course, The North Face is pleased to offer you a one-off 20% discount, to be used on The North Face website,” the discount reads. “Please enter the unique code at the checkout to activate this discount. Please note that this is not applicable to those accessing the course from North America.”

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