Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice (DEIJ)

Media outlets too often reinforce harmful stereotypes and perpetuate forms of discrimination, thereby leaving large parts of the communities they serve excluded or misrepresented. The news industry has long been led by a privileged subset of the population, and the bias and systemic racism that reporters chronicle in their stories often is present in journalism itself. States Newsroom commits to do better. We pledge to embody the values of diversity, equity, inclusion and justice, and we ask readers to hold us accountable.

We embrace diversity and equity as inherent to States Newsroom's mission to be a news source for every member of the community and as an organ of First Amendment freedoms for all people. We also recognize such values as central to superior news reporting. Our journalism succeeds only if it reflects and informs readers from diverse backgrounds, regardless of race, ethnicity, nationality, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, ability/neurodiversity, age or socioeconomic status. We recognize that people from marginalized communities face challenges that others do not, and our work will not ignore society's inequities. We intend to produce the kind of journalism that is a force for positive social change and that challenges the inequality and racism many readers experience.

We incorporate values of diversity and equity in selecting stories to pursue, choosing sources to consult, and crafting language to publish. We are guided by such values in hiring for our newsrooms, fostering organization culture, and retaining staff members.

A year ago, States Newsroom committed to doing more. Since then, we have:

  • Launched this webpage where are values can be accessed
  • Maintained a DEIJ committee to advise the organization’s leadership on steps it can take to further actualize values of diversity and equity
  • Advertised open positions at States Newsroom with professional organizations, such as National Association of Black Journalists, National Association of Hispanic Journalists, Asian American Journalists Association, Native American Journalists Association, to ensure our candidate pools include as much variety as possible
  • Included language about our appreciation of difference in the About our Culture section of every job post
  • Used our social media channels to post open jobs
  • Circulated vacant positions internally for employees to explore growth opportunities
  • Added salary information to all of our job postings
  • Impressed the importance of States Newsroom’s DEIJ values upon every hiring manager and editor during any hiring process
  • Pursued reporting and sourcing with an eye to diversity and inclusion
  • Began to establish partnerships with HBCUs and minority-serving institutions to provide opportunities for training young journalists of color
  • Hired an experienced consultant then transitioned to a full-time practitioner to take the lead on all DEIJ matters
  • Provided the majority of our staff with a DEIJ training

We have more to learn about diverse perspectives and identities, and we know this will be a process. What are we getting right? What are we doing wrong? We invite you to tell us.

Learn more about States Newsroom via our 2023 States Newsroom Employee Census Report.

Want to level up your political journalism game? Interested in advancing your journalism skills to better report on how state policy decisions are impacting your community? Apply for the States Newsroom Fellowship: a summer program that places students and early-career journalists with our affiliate newsrooms across the country.