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    It’s been two months since George Floyd’s death at the hands of the Minneapolis Police was caught on video. Like all of you, the staff at Broadview experienced intense emotions amid the outrage that followed.

    As journalists, we also had a job to do. We scrapped our editorial plans and hustled together columns and blogs, and assigned an upcoming feature package about systemic racism in policing here in Canada.

    I’m proud of this work, but a few times I’ve caught myself veering toward smug satisfaction. Thankfully, another thought swiftly followed: “You merely did your job. Dig deeper.”

    Digging deeper has led me to consider the systemic issues within our own small organization that have led to an almost all-white staff and Board of Directors. Among 16 staff and 11 Board members, only four (15%) are racialized. In Canada, racialized people make up a third of the population.

    As Editor and Publisher of Broadview, I don’t elect board members, but I am able to recommend individuals for consideration. I do hire the staff. So if this homogenous composition reflects my own racial bias, what do I do about it?

    Two friends who work at the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) have helped me answer this question. One, an executive director, wrote a recent blog promising that one in two new hires at all levels would come from “underrepresented equity groups.” Another told me that being non-white is no longer considered “just a nice quality” in a potential CBC employee. On the score sheets used to rank candidates, identifying as a BIPOC scores a 5 out of 5 within the hard skills section.

    In the coming weeks, I’ll be hiring another staff person. As I sift through resumes, I’ll be on the lookout for many skills, including the hard skill of having navigated life as a non-white person. I’m convinced that our team needs the perspectives of racialized people to achieve success; without them, we risk blind spots in editorial and operations.

    I encourage you to examine your own hiring practices. Embrace uncomfortable questions and dig deeper. Your publications, and our larger association as committed Christian publishers, will be stronger for it.

    Jocelyn Bell
    Associated Church Press Board Member
    Editor and Publisher, Broadview