CBC commits to better diversity hiring practices

The pubcaster aims to have at least one key creative role for each of its factual and scripted series filled by a diverse worker by 2025.
June 10, 2019

Canadian pubcaster the CBC has unveiled a new pledge to feature diverse individuals in a variety of roles across its scripted and factual content.

Announced Monday at the Banff World Media Festival, the pubcaster will work to ensure at least one key creative role on all future series will be filled by someone with a diverse background by 2025. Roles considered as key creative include producer, director, writer, showrunner and lead performer.

CBC also specified that if the available talent pool does not include qualified diverse candidates, the expectation is for producers to mentor or train a diverse worker for one of the creative roles indicated. It defines an individual from a diverse background as either a visible minority, Indigenous Peoples, a person with a disability or a member of the LGBTQ community.

The pubcaster previously revealed its 2018-2021 Diversity and Inclusion Plan in Sept. 2018, which aims to use statistics available from the 2016 census to indicate hiring targets for better representation onscreen and in its workforce. At that point CBC had surpassed its 2020 goal of 23.2% of diverse workers, hiring 27.8% by Q4 2017. CBC has also surpassed its gender parity goal, revealing that 62% of key creative roles were filled by women in the 2018/19 broadcast year.

The announcement comes a month after Women in View published their On Screen Report for 2014-2017, which revealed a large disparity between opportunities for white women and diverse women in the industry. For example, while 47% of Canadian TV writing roles in 2017 were held by women, only 1% were held by women of color and zero by Indigenous women. The report also revealed that the likelihood of women and color and Indigenous women hired in those roles statistically increases when a showrunner or producer is also diverse.

By Kelly Townsend. This story originally appeared in Playback Daily.

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.