[In terms of on-air disability presence, my previous post did not specifically deal with dramatic and comedy productions such as Murdoch Mysteries, Heartland, Anne and Schitt's Creek. You will notice they don't have characters with disabilities.]
The CBC has a a glossy INCLUSION AND DIVERSITY PLAN
for 2015- 2018. The document's preamble is written by Hubert T. Lacroix, President and CEO of CBC, Heather Conway, Executive Vice-President, English Services and Louis LaLande, Executive Vice President, French Services. They state they support inclusion and diversity in programming and show cycles "from idea development through production and post-broadcast measurement." They continued:
"Having a diverse workforce, including our management team, allows us to capture the aspirations of all groups that make up our social fabric. We know we still have a lot of work to do, but we are confident that the Inclusion and Diversity Plan 2015-2018 will lay a foundation for our success as Canada's public broadcaster."
Really? Even senior management? In their most up-to-date employment table 2 in the Inclusion and Diversity Plan, entitled "CBC/Radio Canada WORKFORCE
ANALYSIS BY EMPLOYMENT EQUITY OCCUPATIONAL GROUP for 2014, the best they could muster for senior managers and middle managers was 1.3%. The dismal stats and unattained goals for a workforce that includes employees with disabilities makes their hollow words an embarrassment. Apparently the aspirations of people with disabilities are not included in CBC's "social fabric".
Mother Corp's Inclusion and Diversity plan acknowledges that,
"... Aboriginal peoples and persons with disabilities saw marginal increases in representation. However, important representation gaps remain for those two groups. Barring a concerted recruitment and hiring effort, existing gaps for three out of four groups will remain."
With regards to employees with disabilities, they say employment advances were "marginal"? I prefer the word minuscule. The Inclusion and Diversity Plan shows that as of December 2011, employees with disabilities at CBC was only 1.5% of staff. Three years later the number nudged up ever so slightly to 1.7%. A 0.2% increase over three years is minuscule. The CBC is falling far behind in their goal of 4.6% for that time period. Perhaps it is time for "concerted recruitment and hiring effort" -- there's only one year left in CBC's INCLUSION AND DIVERSITY PLAN.
The Inclusion and diversity plan for 2015-2018 is a farce. The CBC is not attaining their own pathetic goals. They are only half way toward their 2018 goal for the category that includes on-air staff with disabilities and only 1.7% of their total workforce represents employees with disabilities. Their goal is 4.4%. Quite simply, the CBC is not anywhere close to their own goals.
Apparently The Plan is reviewed by the CBC's Vice President of People and Culture, currently Monique Marcotte, and her staff, as
well as what they have dubbed their Joint Employment Equity Committee made up of stakeholders. Their implementation and monitoring strategy is failing.
Things have not improved much since I was involved nearly 30 years ago. The CBC has a very selective and partial version of inclusion and diversity. Actions may speak louder than words -- but so does inaction.
|Hubert T. LaCroix
CBC's President & CEO
Inclusion and diversity are more than statistics, percentages, and goals which are simple quantitative and hopefully qualitative tools of measurement. Dedication to inclusion and diversity begins in the human heart and works out.
It is a blazing truth that people behave as they think; beliefs should govern their thinking and reflect in their actions. But not to act is to act. It is high time for the CBC to illustrate through hiring, training and retention of employees with disabilities, it's ongoing commitment to the very inclusion and diversity they espouse.
Mark Davis Pickup