What’s White, and White, and White All Over?

Facts are a funny thing.

Despite the fact that a significant portion of the Canadian population is comprised of visible minorities, the reality is that there is a startling lack of minority representation in newsrooms across the country. So even though the reality of an increasingly diverse workforce is something that must be realized, many are still excluded from the media.

What’s worse is that studies of diversity in Canadian newsrooms are few and far between, so finding out about these disparities is hard to do.

Among the latest studies is a 2004 investigation by John Miller of Ryerson University, which reports non-whites comprised 3.4 per cent of the country’s newspaper workforce while representing about 17 per cent of the general population.

In plainer terms, the employees of the 37 papers that responded to the study were made up of 2,119 people, from which only 72 were visible minorities. That’s not a typo—only 72 visible minorities could be counted out of over 2,000 employees. It’s a number that unquestionably fails to properly represent the diversity that can be found in Canada, and it gets worse. Continue reading