Photo Credit: Sipa USA via APOn May 4, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), released a letter to its membership stating it had, “created a roadmap for transformational change in our organisation.” They are also organizers of the Golden Globes Awards.
The HFPA is suffering from months of complaints and criticism over the lack of diversity in its membership, and ethical conflicts about financial rewards.
The 86-member non-profit group currently has no Black members and promises to attract, “Black and other racially diverse journalists into our organization.”
The letter outlines the HFPA’s pledge to add a minimum of 20 new members in 2021, “with a specific focus on recruiting Black members,” and to expand its membership to over 130 over the next 18 months.
It also will change requirements such as the need to live in southern California, which is a barrier to underrepresented groups.
The HFPA is also recruiting a Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer and self-described oversight board to help with “critical organizational reform.”
Ethical criticism includes claims that the Golden Globes voting procedure involves promotional handouts and financial rewards.
The organization plans to stop members from accepting “promotional items” and to “strengthen conflict of interest disclosures”.
The full membership of the HFPA will vote on the plan this summer. A majority is required for ratification. The HFPA Board has threatened to resign en masse if the majority rejects the plan.
The HFPA began in 1943 as the Hollywood Foreign Correspondents Association. Their motto is “Unity Without Discrimination of Religion or Race.”
SOURCES: DEADLINE.COM, THEGUARDIAN.COM, TIMESUPNOW.ORG