The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the governing body for the Golden Globes awards, will be adding more Black journalists as members.
The association currently has a membership made up of roughly 90 international journalists who write about television and film in various publications around the world, none of whom are Black.
In a Tuesday statement to USA TODAY, the HFPA board announced it would increase membership and require 13% of them to be Black. This board said this change comes as a “demonstration of (their) commitment” to make “necessary changes” to the organization.
“We also acknowledge that we should have done more, and sooner,” The HFPA Board wrote. “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.”
This announcement comes after more than 100 publicists signed a letter to the HFPA, saying the publicists would not participate in any HFPA events or interviews until there is “transformational change” within the organization.
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Time’s Up, an organization aimed at creating diverse work environments within the entertainment industry, released a statement Monday on Twitter commending the publicists’ letter to the HFPA.
“We commend the 100+ Hollywood public relations firms for urging the HFPA to swiftly manifest profound and lasting change. The entire world is watching,” the organization wrote.
Earlier in March the HFPA unveiled an action plan to address issues of diversity within the board. A Los Angeles Times investigation found the HFPA had no Black members, calling attention to the fact that Black-led awards season contenders such as “Da 5 Bloods” and “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” failed to earn nominations in the Globes’ best-picture categories this year. The group also came under fire for paying its own members to serve as officers and committee members.
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In their March 6 statement, the association vowed to add Black and other underrepresented professionals to the group, hire an independent law firm to establish a process for reporting and investigating ethical violations, create transparent processes for voting, eligibility and membership and support underrepresented students interested in a career in international journalism.
“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 board wrote.
Contributing: Kim Willis
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