Two people have asked a few questions about why I am proposing a NAHJ DC Chapter Board Resolution “Supporting the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.”
First, the resolution urges members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus “to support and collaborate with their congressional colleagues on both sides of the aisle to fully fund CPB.”
Our chapter has a unique opportunity to meet with lawmakers at the U.S. Capitol on July 18. My intention is to seize this unique opportunity by delivering a message that directly impacts our members in the nation’s capital. The CPB funds news organizations where at least five of our members work. Most people think CPB funds only Sesame Street. That is simply not the case. Our members who work at NPR are prohibited from speaking out about this matter. I did not name them in the proposed resolution, nor did any of them ask us to create this resolution. I came up with the idea on my own accord to support our members who work at PBS and NPR.
We are asking members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to work with Republicans and Democrats to fund the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. In my research, I found there are two bills, one in the House and one in the Senate, that call on eliminating the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Since 2003, The NAHJ National Board set a precedent on passing resolutions concerning news organizations, media ownership, journalist shield laws, and net neutrality. In fact, former national president Juan Gonzalez testified before a congressional hearing concerning minority ownership.
If we, the Board of the NAHJ Washington, D.C. Chapter, pass this resolution, it would be the first resolution passed by an NAHJ Chapter and given to members of Congress. We are following the example set by the NAHJ National Board.
I’ve included links of milestones in NAHJ’s 25 year History. Those milestones include the items mentioned above and the NAHJ National Board highlighting the lack of Latinos in the Ken Burns Documentary, which was broadcast on PBS. Since then, PBS has started working on a new documentary that includes Latinos. I’ve also included Juan Gonzalez’s testimony.
Our chapter board conference call is at 7:00 PM. We’ll announce outcome as soon as the meeting adjourns.