St. Louis Public Radio Joins 'Public Media For All' Coalition To Further Diversity, Equity And Inclusion In Public Media
St. Louis Public Radio has joined the Public Media For All coalition to raise awareness of the negative effects of a lack of diversity, equity and inclusion in public media and to help share solutions. Public Media For All is a diverse coalition of public media workers from across the country and is led by people of color. The coalition considers diversity, equity and inclusion at every level and in every facet of public media as essential to ensuring meaningful service to all.
The coalition has designated November 10 as a day of action and education, with activities including social media messaging, on-air mentions and educational opportunities, as well as promoting a three-year, public commitment to engage in a series of action items that support diversity, equity and inclusion efforts within stations and other public media organizations.
"On this 'Day of Action for Public Media For All,' St. Louis Public Radio embraces the powerful, pointed and time bound steps outlined in the initiative,” Interim General Manager Tom Livingston said. “St. Louis Public Radio has made some progress in recent years to become a more diverse organization. But, there is still much work to be done — particularly in the areas of equity in training opportunities, diversifying management and leadership, and fostering a more inclusive workplace. Without diversity, equity and inclusion in our workforce, we can't fully deliver on our mission to inform, inspire and engage the diverse audiences and communities we serve."
An independent investigation of equity practices at the station remains underway. Once that is complete, UMSL’s Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion will provide specific recommendations to improve hiring, recruiting and retention efforts.
During this day of action, St. Louis Public Radio staff will participate in a Public Media For All workshop and are encouraged to spend additional time reading and reflecting on the negative effects of systemic racism and ways to bring change to their own organization and public media as a whole.
St. Louis Public Radio is already taking a number of actions related to the Public Media For All initiative, including:
- Applying to bring the Next Generation Radio project to St. Louis;
- Implementing 360 performance management reviews for all supervisors;
- Forming a new committee of the Friends of KWMU community advisory board focused on diversity, equity and inclusion;
- Forming a staff working group focused on diversity, equity and inclusion;
- Working to again fund our internship program, which provides paid training for college students and graduates; and
- Seeking a third-party facilitator to engage staff in brave, constructive and respectful conversations about race.