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Tipsheet

CNN Slammed by Hispanic Journalists Organization for Lack of Diversity

AP Photo/Ron Harris

The National Association of Hispanic Journalists issued a statement this week saying it is “appalled” by the lack of well-qualified Latino journalists in the lineup for CNN’s upcoming streaming platform CNN+.

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The statement was shared on the organization’s website. The current CNN+ lineup includes Kate Bolduan, Sara Sidner, Anderson Cooper, Brian Stelter, Wolf Blitzer, and several others, including former Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace.

“The National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ) is appalled by the lack of Latino journalists in the CNN+ lineup. This lack of representation is not only disrespectful to our diverse community, but also disregards the well-qualified Latino talent pool within the organization.

We expect Chris Licht to do better to ensure that CNN hosts delivering the news reflect the communities they cover, and that diverse candidates are given equal opportunity. To build a strong pipeline of Latino journalists, it is essential CNN+ develop and nurture diverse talent within their news programs, not only to accurately represent communities across the country, but also to positively contribute to the network’s evolving programming.

Despite a reckoning over race that has motivated many newsroom leaders to commit to diversifying their newsrooms, many news organizations continue to do a dismal job. NAHJ demands that CNN leaders rectify this oversight.”

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In September, Johnita Due, CNN’s senior vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer told The Hollywood Reporter that the organization was “working very hard” on diversity and “underrepresented voices.” This came after CNN+ was announced about a month prior.

“We want our external facing consumers to understand that internally we are working very hard to empower diverse and underrepresented voices, we are working very hard every day to make sure the stories we tell and the way we tell them, are making a difference,” she told the Reporter.

CNN responded to the NAHJ in a statement shared with The Wrap on Wednesday afternoon. There was no indication if they would revisit their CNN+ lineup and implement more diversity.

“As a longstanding partner of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, we are proud to launch CNN+ with a very diverse lineup including ‘Eva Longoria: Searching for Mexico,’ which is currently in production,” the statement said. “We continue to have discussions with journalists across the industry around opportunities at CNN+ and look forward to announcing more diverse shows, talent and content offerings soon.”

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However, Longoria’s role in CNN+ is not journalist reporting similar to her counterparts. Instead, the actress will take part in a six-part series “follow[ing] Longoria as she traverses Mexico exploring one of the most popular, and arguably misunderstood, global cuisines.”

In a statement shared by CNN, Longoria called it a “culturally-driven expedition” and that it will serve as a follow-up to “Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy.”

“Join Longoria as she journeys across the many vibrant regions of Mexico to reveal its unique and colorful cuisines,” CNN’s statement added. “Eva’s passion for Mexico and its culture and cuisine are a natural follow up to Stanley’s trip through Italy.”

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