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RTDNA: Radio Newsrooms Take Hit With Minorities, Women

Numbers on minorities in radio newsroom continue downward trend

The last couple of years have not been too strong for minorities and women when it comes to jobs in radio newsrooms, according to the Radio Television Digital News Association. For the second year in a row, the percentage of minorities in newsrooms decreased, while the number of staffs with women also saw a drop; though both factions did see growth in certain areas.

The percentage of minorities in radio newsrooms fell 0.4 points from 2015. African Americans and Native Americans saw decreases, Hispanic/Latino saw a slight increase, and Asian Americans remained stagnant. Noncommercial stations and larger markets generally offer more diverse staffs, though larger local station groups appeared to be less diverse, per the report. RTDNA indicated that the Northeast region was the least diverse in 2016.

Women saw a seven point decrease in staffing; the number of women in the workforce also dropped by seven points. Like with minorities, noncommercial stations had a better representation. Of all types of markets, only major markets average more than one woman on staff.

The one area that both groups saw an increase was in those who held news director positions. A total 7.5% of news director positions were held by minorities in 2016 — up from 5.1% in 2015 — though none were held by Asian Americans. Women, meanwhile, saw an boost of four points in this category. The two facets split however on the number of radio general managers, with minorities dropping 1.3 points, and women growing by nearly two.

To see the full RTDNA report click here.