CalTimes 2020 Diversity & Inclusion Report

The Los Angeles Times and San Diego Union-Tribune are located in and serve two of the most diverse cities in the world. Our organization, California Times, is one of the most diverse and inclusive in the newspaper publishing industry. Two years after being acquired by the first person of color to own either paper in more than 150 years of history, and in the midst of a national reckoning on racism, we recommitted ourselves to better representing our communities.

We strive to improve diversity, equity and inclusion, and to cultivate a sense of belonging among all employees. Two of our new company’s five core values, Diversity and Fairness, support the shared goal of valuing the perspectives and contributions of all people. We have also considered pay equity and fair compensation issues as part of our recently completed compensation review and, for our union-represented employees, collective bargaining agreement. Our company has also adopted policies that support these values in our hiring, retention and advancement practices.

This report includes data on the gender and ethnic makeup of the staff of the Los Angeles Times and San Diego Union-Tribune, as self-reported by staff as of July 2020. The categories are based on those provided by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Included are comparisons to demographic data for Los Angeles County, San Diego County and for the other most populous Southern California counties. Breakouts for our business and newsroom departments are also included. In some cases, the total for an individual category may vary from 100% due to rounding.

Part A - Gender

Trend reports for California Times employees since the acquisition of The Times by Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong in June 2018.

All Los Angeles Times employees

L.A. Times business employees

L.A. Times newsroom employees

All San Diego Union-Tribune employees

Part B - Ethnicity

Compared to the Local Population

L.A. County Population Data from U.S. Census, 2019 at,CA/PST045219.

White and People of Color Comparisons

All L.A. Times employees

L.A. Times newsroom employees

L.A. Times business employees

All San Diego Union-Tribune employees

People of Color Breakdown

All L.A. Times staff

L.A. Times newsroom employees

L.A. Times business employees

All San Diego Union-Tribune employees

Action Plan

We are committed to continuous improvement, not only in representing the communities we serve, but also in cultivating a sense of inclusion and belonging among all of our staff. To that end, we have created a robust action plan to enhance our existing policies and procedures and to institute new ones.

Recruitment and Hiring

We will strengthen the procedures that ensure diversity is considered in our hiring process across all areas of our business. This includes an investment in technology that better enables us to source diverse talent to support this effort. Key performance indicators are being developed to monitor adherence to recruitment procedures and hold managers accountable.

In The Times newsroom, all journalists, including members of the Guild’s Black and Latino Caucuses, are kept informed about the creation of all new jobs and recruiting efforts as we search for candidates.

We also established a new position — assistant managing editor for culture and talent — and that editor meets with the Latino and Black Caucuses at least once a quarter to discuss openings and promotion opportunities. We have also established a position of deputy editor, culture and talent and that editor will work with the assistant managing editor to overhaul our internship and Metpro programs for the newsroom.

Over the next five years, our goal is to achieve a newsroom where Latinos make up at least one-quarter of our staff, and where we move closer to community representation with our Black and other diverse staff.

A project is underway to revamp our job descriptions to ensure they use inclusive language, include fair and consistent minimum and preferred qualifications, and incorporate our newly developed competency framework, which is based on company values developed in 2019 in consultation with the staff.

Learning and Development

The assistant managing editor for culture and talent is building tailored mentorship and training offerings for Times newsroom staff.

All executive leaders across the organization have attended a live four-week (virtual) training program, “Becoming an Anti-Racist Leader: Strategies and Action Steps for a More Inclusive Workplace,” hosted by Dr. A. Breeze Harper and Dr. Keegan Walden.

All managers across the organization have been assigned a six-part online training course, “CalTimes Diversity and Inclusion Training for Managers,” and to date 98% have completed this course.

All managers, from the newsroom and business areas of the L.A. Times and San Diego Union-Tribune, are undertaking mandatory recruitment and unconscious bias training between November 2020 and March 2021.

All other employees across the organization are taking a live, facilitated training, “The Art of Inclusive Communication,” hosted by the National Conflict Resolution Center, between September 2020 and February 2021.

Performance Evaluation and Promotion

All managers across the organization underwent mandatory performance management training in Spring 2020.

We are further developing our performance management program, which has historically focused on annual reviews, to move toward continuous performance management. We are also working to enable a 360-degree feedback program.

We have created new columnist positions within both Metro and Entertainment to build additional opportunities for growth. We have created two new Metro roles to focus on reporting on Black L.A. and Health in L.A.

All backfill and new roles across the organization are advertised internally, and we are developing systems to enable job alerts for opportunities matching employees’ skills and interests to be promoted to them.

Fostering a Fair and Inclusive Culture

We have begun conducting staff surveys and focus groups on past hiring, engagement and management practices, and creating new metrics to evaluate managers’ adherence to diversity initiatives.

We will continue reviewing compensation annually to ensure pay equity across the organization.

The executive leadership anti-racism training program was followed by a debriefing and action planning session, attended by all the executive leaders of the organization, at which agreement was reached on over 10 new items that will further increase inclusion and foster belonging across the organization.

News Coverage

The Times Editorial Board has published an apology for past complicity with racism and a collection of extensive coverage of the paper’s reckoning on race and our commitment to meaningful change. The Times has also conducted an analysis of its recent coverage and is engaged in an ongoing examination of its standards and practices.

Los Angeles Times en Español, The Times’ Spanish-language publication, is more prominently featured on the homepage and within the website navigation. We have also doubled the budget for Times en Español translation, so that more reporting can be made available to Spanish-language readers. An English-language newsletter for the Latino community, The Latinx Files, was launched in October 2020.

Diverse and Inclusive Leadership

Between June 2018, when The Times was acquired by new ownership, and the end of 2019, we made strides in diversifying our newsroom management, moving from 32% people of color and 35% female to 38% people of color and 42% female.

At the masthead level at The Times, during the same period, we have moved from 33% people of color and 25% female to 50% people of color and 50% female. Notably, The Times’ masthead has since become majority female.

We are committed to continuing these increases in the diversity of the newsroom and company leadership.