January 27, 2021
AAJA urges action to correct toxic work environment experienced by employees of color at CBS-owned and operated local stations
The Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) is concerned by the toxic work environment that journalists and staff of color have experienced at CBS Television Stations. AAJA stands with the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ) in demanding immediate change, especially with the most recent allegations around CBS3 in Philadelphia. We are aware of long-standing concerns about the treatment of journalists across CBS-owned and operated local stations.
We urge immediate action to hold accountable those in leadership who have allowed, encouraged, and enabled mistreatment, including the allegations that President Peter Dunn and Senior Vice President of News David Friend fostered a hostile work environment. We applaud the courage of journalists who have spoken up about this mistreatment, and we stand ready to support those who have not yet spoken up.
We are heartened by ViacomCBS’ commitment to diversity and inclusion, but it is clear that immediate change is needed at CBS Television Stations. AAJA demands CBS leadership create a supportive work environment where journalists, especially the journalists of color who are underrepresented in their companies, are empowered to do their best work.
AAJA is also concerned about the lack of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) journalists at CBS local stations, especially at the management levels. Many of the CBS-owned stations, including stations in Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia, are in cities with significant and growing AAPI populations. AAJA urges CBS stations to not only recruit staff that accurately reflects the diversity of our communities, but also to elevate and promote journalists of color — including AAPIs.
We offer our support, partnership and assistance to ViacomCBS, CBSNews, CBS Television Stations, and all related news units, to work toward building inclusive newsrooms that better reflect and represent the diversity of our communities and our country.
Read AAJA-Philadelphia’s statement on the allegations of racism and misogyny at CBS Television Stations and CBS3.