From Todays Drum:
Citing the hiring of former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer as a missed opportunity by CNN to put a non-white anchor on in primetime, the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) has fired off a public letter aimed not just at CNN, but all of the cable news networks for “moving backward” on diversity. Read the letter:
Dear Cable News Executives:
It is 2010, but the National Association of Black Journalists sees our cable news networks moving backward when it comes to who they believe is worthy of anchoring prime time news shows.
NABJ was founded in 1975 to encourage news media companies to hire and to promote more Black journalists. At that time, black journalists originally hired to cover riots during the turbulent 1960s found they were not being assigned to meaningful beats or were only allowed to cover “Black” stories.
NABJ’s advocacy for fair hiring practices paid off. Many of our founders, including columnists Les Payne in New York and DeWayne Wickham in Washington, D.C., and anchor Maureen Bunyan in Washington, D.C. remain prominent figures in the media.
NABJ continues this advocacy today. To be candid, we have been focusing our talks with media executives on ways they can increase the diversity of their news management teams. It is our belief that a diverse management team improves coverage decisions and hiring practices. It seems, though, that the companies have taken that to mean that we don’t care about who is on the air. We’re watching, and we do.
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