HFPA taking steps to increase diversity after Golden Globes controversy

Golden Globes trophy
Posted at 10:09 AM, Mar 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-07 13:11:14-05

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Under fire for its lack of Black membership, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has promised a series of steps to increase the group's diversity and responsiveness to inclusion issues.

The group of journalists that present the annual Golden Globe Awards was criticized ahead of last week's ceremony after a Los Angeles Times report found that its 87 voting members contained no Black people.

The controversy was mentioned in the broadcast too, with co-hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler taking the organization to task. Later in the Globes ceremony, three leaders of the HFPA took to the stage to deliver short scripted statements vowing a commitment to diversity.

On Saturday, the HFPA issued a statement outlining specific steps the group is taking, including:

-- Hiring an independent expert in diversity to audit HFPA bylaws and membership requirements;

-- Mandating anti-racism, unconscious bias education and sexual harassment training for every member;

-- Hiring a third-party law firm to ensure that HFPA policies are aligned with and exceed industry best practices;

-- Working with that law firm to ensure that any HFPA member, partner, vendor or artists can report any violation of the group's ethical standards or code of conduct with the confidence that it will be fully and fairly investigated;

-- Increasing support of internship, mentorship and scholarship programs for Black and other under-represented students interested in international journalism.

"These are the initial steps we will take over the next 60 days and we will carry out further action based on the recommendations that come from these initial reviews and assessments," the HFPA said.