DALLAS, June 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- AT&T* today announced the release of its 2009 Citizenship and Sustainability Report highlighting the company's progress toward up to $865 million in multi-year commitments for important education, environmental and volunteerism programs that help strengthen communities, stimulate economic growth and ensure America's global competitiveness. The report also showcases the company's relentless passion for innovation - a promise to use the power of its networks to drive human progress.
"At AT&T, we constantly challenge ourselves to find better, smarter ways to run our business – and that extends to being an innovative and responsible corporate citizen," said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and CEO. "Our new Citizenship and Sustainability Report shares our progress and underlines our commitment to drive these initiatives with the same leadership and passion we bring to every part of our business."
The report highlights a variety of initiatives that help make AT&T's business stronger, as well as strengthen communities across the country:
- Reduce Energy Use: In 2009, AT&T built on its ongoing effort to better manage energy use, reduce the amount of energy needed to carry data over its networks and invest in alternative energy. Specific efforts included:
- Appointing a new energy director to oversee companywide energy management efforts and lead AT&T's Energy Council.
- Achieving a 23.8 percent reduction in energy intensity, exceeding the 15 percent reduction target set in 2008.
- Joining the U.S. Department of Energy's Save Energy Now LEADER initiative with a pledge to reduce energy intensity by 25 percent by 2019.
- Deploying 970 alternative-fuel vehicles as part of the company's up-to-$565 million commitment to deploy more than 15,000 fuel efficient vehicles through 2018.
- Maintain a Competitive and Diverse Workforce: Recognizing that the high school drop-out crisis impacts the ability of American businesses to sustain an educated, talented and diverse workforce, AT&T remains committed to its $100 million Aspire program. The program seeks to improve high school retention rates and prepare the next generation of U.S. workers. In 2009, AT&T continued to support Aspire with initiatives including:
- Eighty-two local community programs initially funded in 2008 through Aspire completed their first round of the evaluation process in 2009.
- By the end of 2009, AT&T reached 23,000 students in more than 200 cities through our job shadowing initiative with Junior Achievement.
- AT&T funded national research that explored practitioners' perspectives on the high school drop-out crisis. That research and prior research with dropouts and parents revealed disparities in how these three key audiences view the crisis. In response, we underwrote follow-up face-to-face research that included all three groups. The results of that research effort were released in March 2010.
- As of year-end 2009, 27,000 stakeholders in 44 states participated in 84 drop-out prevention summits in 46 cities sponsored in part by AT&T and organized by America's Promise Alliance. The summits were designed to bring together community stakeholders to explore the root of the high school drop-out crisis.
"The United States has one of the lowest graduation rates of any industrialized nation in the world, and when thousands of students leave school each day that loss is felt beyond the classroom to impact whole communities," said Marguerite Kondracke, president and CEO, America's Promise Alliance. "AT&T understands this, and their Aspire program is helping us not only bring communities together to address the dropout crisis, but engage young people themselves in the development of solutions for it."
- Community Engagement: In 2009, AT&T employees and retirees volunteered more than 8.5 million hours of time – valued at more than $176 million(i)– to community activities across the country. To further encourage employee volunteerism AT&T launched:
- A new employee volunteer Web site called AT&T Cares that enables employees to register and join individual, group and companywide volunteer initiatives.
- The AT&T/YourCause.com online community that enables employees to create their own personalized Web pages to raise funds for charities of their choice. In the first three months since the launch, AT&T employees raised more than $98,000 for charities through AT&T/YourCause pages.
"We've always understood that our company is inextricably linked to the world around us," said Charlene Lake, senior vice president of public affairs and chief sustainability officer. "We are committed to continue challenging the status quo so we can address the long-term needs of both our business and the communities where we live and work. We realize there's more work ahead of us that needs to be done, but we're proud of the progress we made in 2009."
Lake said AT&T will strive to further embed sustainability principles into the company's business strategy, improve reporting and further engage employees in these efforts.
For more information about AT&T's sustainability efforts, please visit www.att.com/csr.
The complete 2009 Citizenship and Sustainability Report, Connecting for a Sustainable Future, can be downloaded online at www.att.com/csr. An executive summary is also available online.
This report is aligned with the Global Reporting Initiative's (GRI) G3 Guidelines and AT&T self-declared the report to application level C. The GRI Sustainability Reporting Guidelines provide a framework for organizations to report on their social, environmental and economic performance and was used to develop AT&T's report. AT&T also details in the report a set of goals to help guide and measure its progress. A complete list of AT&T's citizenship and sustainability goals is available at www.att.com/csr.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates – AT&T operating companies – are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation's fastest 3G network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet and voice services. A leader in mobile broadband, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. It also offers advanced TV services under the AT&T U-verse(SM) and AT&T |DIRECTV(SM) brands. The company's suite of IP-based business communications services is one of the most advanced in the world. In domestic markets, AT&T Advertising Solutions and AT&T Interactive are known for their leadership in local search and advertising. In 2010, AT&T again ranked among the 50 Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE® magazine.
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i. The financial equivalent is determined by using $20.85/per volunteer hour, which is based on the 2009 industry standard from Independent Sector, a leading nonprofit organization that determines the financial equivalent for a variety of volunteer initiatives. http://independentsector.org/volunteer_time
SOURCE AT&T Inc.