WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 27, 2017) — The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) is disturbed and dismayed by recent allegations of a racist work environment at FOX News. Eleven current and former Fox News employees, including Emmy-winning anchor Kelly Wright, filed a class-action lawsuit in New York this week, according to The Washington Post.
“The recent discrimination allegations at FOX News are unsettling. NABJ was founded 42 years ago to fight against racism and discrimination in newsrooms and we pledge to continue to do so today,” said NABJ President Sarah Glover. “We’ve seen downsizing and layoffs in U.S. newsrooms that have had a disproportionate effect on the number of working black journalists. No one working in the media industry today should be subjected to discriminatory practices. This has to end.”
When asked about the lawsuit, a FOX News official offered the following statement to NABJ: “FOX News and Dianne Brandi vehemently deny the race discrimination claims in both lawsuits. They are copycat complaints of the original one filed last month. We will vigorously defend these cases.”
Douglas H. Wigdor, founding partner at Wigdor, LLP and the attorney representing the plaintiffs in the FOX News case, stated at a Wednesday news conference: “When it comes to racial discrimination, 21st Century Fox has been operating as if it should be called 18th Century Fox. We sincerely hope the filing of this race class action wakes 21st Century Fox from its slumbers and inspires the company to take a conciliatory and appropriate approach to remedy its wrongs.”
“NABJ believes diverse newsrooms improve fair and balanced coverage of issues important to all viewers and that no journalist should be subjected to discrimination while doing their job,” said NABJ Vice President-Broadcast Dorothy Tucker.
NABJ has an active Media Monitoring Committee and the association is reaching out to to several major media outlets to address our diversity concerns.
About the National Association of Black Journalists: An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. For additional information, please visit www.nabj.org.