BETHLEHEM, Pa. - Business and community leaders gathered Tuesday in Bethlehem to announce a new project to combat racism.

According to the Community Action Committee of the Lehigh Valley, nearly half of the kids in Lehigh County and a third in Northampton County come from mixed backgrounds.

The group is leading an effort called "Color Outside The Lines" to put race on the forefront of the community's mind.

Organizers say they are seeking groups of people to develop a five-to-seven-year plan to combat systemic racism. City, school district, and business leaders say they're on board.

"This program gives us the opportunity of inclusion but it also gives us the opportunity to give that helping hand," Easton Mayor Sal Panto said.

PPL CEO William Spence says he has already taken steps to increase diversity in his company because new employees have an expectation of inclusion.

"To the extent we don't have that, guess what they leave. They will not stay and we don't want to find out the hard way," Spence said.

The group hopes to begin gathering data in January and have a concrete plan by the fall.