Joaquin Castro
U.S. Representative Joaquin Castro (D-TX) speaks at a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, 10 Mar 2021. (Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/Shutterstock)

New Research Shows a Continued Lack of Hispanic and Latinx Representation in Movies, Media and Publishing

In a bit of disheartening news in the midst of Hispanic Heritage Month, a new government study has confirmed that Latinx individuals are vastly under-included and underrepresented in many parts of the media world.

Astrid Galvan of the Associated Press reported on the study from the U.S. Government Accountability Office, which showed that “Latinos are perpetually absent in major newsrooms, Hollywood films and other media industries where their portrayals — or lack thereof — could deeply impact how their fellow Americans view them.”

In the report, researchers calculated that in 2019 — the most recent year they had data to cull from — “the estimated percentage of Latinos working in newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishers was about 8%,” Galvan said. “An estimated 11% of news analysts, reporters and journalists were Latino.”

AP also noted that the study from the Government Accountability Office included Spanish-language networks, where virtually all contributors are Latinx — a fact that could make Latinx representation look slightly better than it actually is.

According to Galvan, “the biggest growth among Hispanics in the media industry was in service jobs, while management jobs had the lowest representation.”

In a similar ongoing study that began in 2014, UCLA’s Ana-Christina Ramón looked at diversity in Hollywood and has found that “Latinos account for only about 5% to 6% of main cast members in TV and film, despite being roughly 18% of the U.S. population.”

According to Galvan, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and the U.S. Government Accountability Office began researching the subject of Latinx inclusion in the media last October, with the support of U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro of Texas.

An ardent supporter of inclusion and representation for the Latinx community, Galvan said Castro continues to make Latinx visibility one of his ongoing agendas, encouraging Hollywood executives, media leaders and book publishers to include the perspectives of Latinx individuals within their work.

“Castro says the lack of accurate representation, especially in Hollywood, means at the very best that Americans don’t get a full understanding of Latinos and their contributions,” Galvan reported. “At worst — especially when Latinos are solely portrayed as drug dealers or criminals — it invites politicians to exploit negative stereotypes for political gain.”

In an interview with the AP, Castro said, “none of this has been an effort to tell people exactly what to write but to encourage that media institutions reflect the face of America. Because then we believe that the stories will be more accurate and more reflective of the truth and less stereotypical. American media, including print journalism, has relied on stereotypes of Latinos. If the goal is the truth, well, that certainly has not served the truth.”

Related: For more recent diversity and inclusion news, click here.


Latest News

Video: How Companies Are Ensuring Equity for People With Disabilities

The National Organization on Disability held its annual forum in Washington, D.C. last week, bringing together community leaders, advocates, government officials and corporate leaders and influencers to focus on the advancement of people with disabilities in the workplace. DiversityInc also met up with leaders from Capital One Financial (No. 22…

Validated Allies wallpaper

DiversityInc Announces 2022 Validated Allies

Allyship is a journey rather than a destination. The work of an ally never really ends and allies understand they are not necessarily always working toward a goal, but rather, serving a greater purpose. Each year, as part of our Women of Color and Their Allies event, DiversityInc recognizes a…

CDO Series: Sysco’s Adrienne Trimble

Following the murder of George Floyd, the role of Chief Diversity Officers has become more important as companies started to be more intentional with their diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, which has made the last few years tumultuous for many CDOs. In the latest installment of a series of articles…

NOD Forum: Honoring the Disability Rights Movement

The road to disability rights has been a long one. One that started long before the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 was passed. In celebration of 40 years of the National Organization on Disability, disability leaders, supporters and activists gathered in Washington, D.C last week to discuss the…

5 Biggest News Stories of the Week: September 29

As the saying goes, the news never stops — but there’s a lot of it out there, and all of it doesn’t always pertain to our readers. In this weekly news roundup, we’ll cover the top news stories that matter most to our diversity focused audience. 1. Research Outlines Lack…

Marriott International building

Marriott International Receives 12 Platinum Honors at the MUSE Creative Awards

Originally published at Marriott International is a Hall of Fame company.   Marriott International’s unmatched portfolio of luxury brands earned 12 Platinum Awards representing 5 dynamic brands, across 10 categories in the 2022 MUSE Creative Awards — an international competition for creative professionals. The industry leader within the luxury…

Marriott International Debuts Its New Global Headquarters Focused on Wellbeing

Originally published at Marriott International is a Hall of Fame company.   After six years of planning, design and construction, Marriott International has opened its global headquarters in downtown Bethesda, Maryland. The 21-story, 785,000-square-foot, LEEDv4 Gold-certified building is the new workplace for corporate associates, supporting over 8,100 hotels in 139…