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View Full Version : Australia: new mixed-race head of ABC to force hiring of non-Whites


Captain Pancakes
10-17-2016, 01:27 PM
ABC orders big rise in ethnic-background journos (http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/media/abc-orders-big-rise-in-ethnicbackground-journos/news-story/635712cba839951dc9809a809a43a34f)

http://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/b8a230b9c40b0000056345a3e2f56849?width=650
(Mixed-race) Managing director of the ABC, Michelle Guthrie. Picture: Aaron Francis.

ABC management has told *the news, radio, television and online departments they must *increase the share of positions held by content makers from ethnic backgrounds by about 60 per cent within two years.

A 12 per cent target by the end of 2018 has been set in the public broadcaster’s Equity and Diversity Plan 2016-18, up from 7.4 per cent.
New managing director *Michelle Guthrie, daughter of a Chinese mother and Australian *father, has vowed to use her *position as the organisation’s first female boss to create a more *diverse *public broadcaster, with greater representation of women and multicultural communities.
But while the quota is voluntary, ABC data shows the public broadcaster went backwards last year in addressing the overwhelming Anglo-Celtic culture at the organisation.


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ABC management has told *the news, radio, television and online departments they must *increase the share of positions held by content makers from ethnic backgrounds by about 60 per cent within two years.

A 12 per cent target by the end of 2018 has been set in the public broadcaster’s Equity and Diversity Plan 2016-18, up from 7.4 per cent.

New managing director *Michelle Guthrie, daughter of a Chinese mother and Australian *father, has vowed to use her *position as the organisation’s first female boss to create a more *diverse *public broadcaster, with greater representation of women and multicultural communities.

But while the quota is voluntary, ABC data shows the public broadcaster went backwards last year in addressing the overwhelming Anglo-Celtic culture at the organisation.

Ms Guthrie took up her position in May.

While the ABC has been running colourful ads telling people from various ethnic groups that it’s “your ABC”, the representation of “content makers” from non-*English speaking backgrounds (NESB) plunged 19 per cent to 157 people in August last year. In real terms, this is a drop from 8.2 per cent of staff to 7.4 per cent.

Staff cuts explain only part of this fall, as NESB were down in relative terms by 0.8 of a percentage point to 7.4 per cent of editorial staff, or a 10 per cent drop. Back in July 2006 when Mark Scott came on board as managing director, the figures were almost identical — 154 NESB content makers or 7.3 per cent of editorial staff. This is fraction of the 23 per cent of Australians who identified as NESB, according to the 2011 Census.

Ethnic Australians are also very poorly represented in senior management. NESB numbers fell 17 per cent to just 29 people in June last year.

One area of progress has been indigenous employment. In August last year the ABC employed 98 indigenous people, or 2.3 per cent of staff. In August 2006 the comparable numbers were 55 indigenous employees or 1.2 per cent of staff.

ABC spokesman Nick Leys said NESB numbers had improved in the 2016 survey. “The ABC’s staffing mix is much more culturally *diverse than the narrow NESB category reflects,” he said. “Many more employees are from culturally diverse backgrounds but speak English as their first *language.”

The NESB data shows that the ABC is above the national average in the “technologists” category, and just below it for administrative staff, which indicates a clear bias in editorial and management recruitment.

The 2016-18 plan notes that the Equal Employment Opportunity (Commonwealth Authorities) Act 1987 requires the ABC to promote equal opportunity for NESB and indigenous people, among other minorities.

The plan says that specific *targets have been developed “as a guide” to ABC divisions “for *consideration and adoption”.

By December 2018, the plan identified a target of 50 per cent women senior executives, 20 per cent women technologists, 15 per cent non-English speaking background senior executives, and “up to 12 per cent” NESB content *makers.

The voluntary targets follow advice provided on the issue last year by Ann Sherry and Carol Schwartz. Michele Fonseca, the ABC’s head of strategy and development, said in a radio interview last year that the ABC was at risk of becoming a “niche broadcaster” unless it could appeal to Australia’s diverse society.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/media/abc-orders-big-rise-in-ethnicbackground-journos/news-story/635712cba839951dc9809a809a43a34f?nk=d8e0eb54f94d76 9ab7639e3c0fdaf7ef-1476732096

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