Golden Globes: HFPA Promises 13 Percent Black Membership By Next Ceremony

Golden Globe statuettes - Getty - H 2016
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In response to a Monday letter from more than 100 PR firms demanding that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association provide "explicit plans" for "transformational change," the organization behind the Golden Globe Awards issued a statement emphasizing that it has gotten the message.

Currently comprised of 87 LA-based journalists for outlets abroad, the HFPA said: "As a demonstration of our commitment, the board has unanimously approved a plan to increase membership to a minimum of 100 members this year, with a requirement that at least 13 percent of the membership be Black journalists."

It further vowed, "We are committed to making necessary changes within our organization and in our industry as a whole. We also acknowledge that we should have done more, and sooner." And it added, "While we recognize this is a long-term process, we will continue to be transparent, provide updates, and have confidence in our ability to change and restore trust in our organization and the Golden Globes."

The full text of the statement appears below.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association reiterates that we are committed to making necessary changes within our organization and in our industry as a whole. We also acknowledge that we should have done more, and sooner. As a demonstration of our commitment, the board has unanimously approved a plan to increase membership to a minimum of 100 members this year, with a requirement that at least 13 percent of the membership be Black journalists. We are also continuing to work on the comprehensive initiatives announced last week. Our outside legal counsel has already begun to work on how to effectively implement transformational changes to our organization, including a comprehensive review of our governance and code of conduct, and Dr. Shaun Harper, our new strategic diversity advisor, has identified the following workstreams:

-Analyzing policies, practices, member recruitment activities, and member selection processes through the prism of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI);

-Facilitating 20 quarterly trainings over the next five years on DEI topics ranging from implicit and explicit bias to strategically diversifying the membership, evolving the Association with changing demographics, welcoming Black members into an inclusive environment, and ensuring equitable pathways to leadership for women members, to name a few;

-Facilitating introductions to prospective strategic DEI partner organizations in journalism and entertainment, and developing a strategy to sustain those mutually-rewarding relationships over many years;

-Conducting interviews with members to invite their input on the development and strategic actualization of DEI goals. Also gathering qualitative insights from industry leaders on what they feel the Association must do to become more equitable, diverse, and inclusive; and

-Systematically assessing and making transparent the Association’s year-to-year progress on DEI goals and commitments.

We have also started meeting with various advocacy groups and racially diverse partners to gather their input and hear their opinions on the additional reforms that need to take place. While we recognize this is a long-term process, we will continue to be transparent, provide updates, and have confidence in our ability to change and restore trust in our organization and the Golden Globes. As we do so, we invite others in the Hollywood community to join us in advancing racial equity in our industry.