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Source Diversity at WSHU for 2021

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Sara Ruberg
/
WSHU Public Radio
Producer Sabrina Garone speaks with Georgette Grier-Key, Brookhaven NAACP president, in Mastic Beach, New York, for the WSHU podcast Higher Ground.

A note from the General Manager:

At the start of our Diversity and Inclusion work for WSHU in 2019, I reached out to colleagues at WHYY who helped inform our thinking and strategy for source diversity in the WSHU newsroom. Here is the thinking they shared: https://www.cjr.org/tow_center_reports/public-radio-cultural-competency.php

Since then, we have replicated best practices from WHYY, NPR and our colleagues at the New England News Collaborative. We are happy to share our first Source Diversity Report.

— A. Rima Dael, WSHU General Manager

Surveying our sources

Over the course of 2021, WSHU journalists asked our sources questions about how they identify in terms of race and gender so that we could keep track of our statistics and share them with our audience. Sources were always allowed to decline to respond to these questions, as well.

Below are the results.

In terms of racial identity, we compared our results with the demographics of our communities of Connecticut and Suffolk and Nassau counties on Long Island.

The 2020 Census showed that in Connecticut, those who identify only as white make up 61.6% of the population. Similarly in Suffolk and Nassau counties on Long Island, 63% of the population identifies only as white.

The population demographic level for Black residents in Connecticut is 12.4% and is 9.2% on Long Island.

2020 Census numbers show those who identify as Hispanic account for 18.7% of Connecticut and 20.2% of Suffolk and Nassau counties, and Asians make up 7.9% of both Connecticut and Long Island.

1.2% of Connecticut residents and 0.5% of Long Islanders identify as Native American.

In the chart below, we also kept track of the proportion of stories that were about race, either touching on the subject or entirely about it.

We also kept track of what types of stories we were writing.