McLean, VA. — UNITY: Journalists of Color is calling on the American Society of News Editors for a new approach. ASNE released the results of its 2009 Diversity Census, showing that the loss of minority journalists has outpaced overall job losses as the industry cut back.
We understand that this is a complex problem – that the economy is a crucial factor; that “last-hired, first-fired” often applies; that ASNE is not a monolithic organization solely responsible for the ups and downs of diversity figures.
We deeply appreciate the valuable service ASNE provides by continuing to track and report numbers despite the grief they invite once the results are published.
UNITY represents alliance partners the Asian American Journalists Association, National Association of Black Journalists, National Association of Hispanic Journalists and Native American Journalists and our 8,000 alliance members.
Today, UNITY and its alliance partners want to reach out and simply ask: How can we help?
We stand ready to partner with ASNE and other organizations to build a new working relationship, get to the root problems and to help rebuild our newsrooms with diversity as a key strategic value. Any news organization that wants to build a sustainable financial future and diverse revenue streams must reflect and serve the changing demographics of its community.
That was the intent of the Diversity Summit UNITY convened last year. Let’s move it forward.
CONTACT: Onica N. Makwakwa