Friday, June 24, 2011

Layoffs | GCI tracking cuts' impact on diversity

Amid the latest round of layoffs, Corporate says it's monitoring how the ax fell on minority employee groups, according to Corporate's chief publicist, Robin Pence.

"We work very hard to ensure no group has been adversely impacted," she told minority affairs blogger Richard Prince for a post yesterday on The Washington Post's Root website.

"As you know, Gannett is tremendously committed to diversity,'' she said. "We have maintained our percentage of female and minority employees over the last few years despite reductions and we work very hard to make sure it's a fair process for all employees."

Do as they say?
Or do as they do? Consider the 13-member Gannett Management Committee, which has overall responsibility for company operations. After Curtis Riddle's retirement last year, is the GMC now 100% white, based on Corporate's definition of minorities?

And then there's Gannett's nine-seat board of directors, which has just one female member after the April retirement of Karen Hastie Williams (who also is African-American) and Donna Shalala.

Related: We're tracking Tuesday's layoffs in this read-only spreadsheet, which shows all job cuts during the current quarter. Plus: During the first quarter, the company eliminated an estimated 279 jobs at 31 sites, according to this site-by-site speadsheet.


  1. AARP should ask the same question, or does age have nothing to do with diversity?

  2. For women like Pence, sure Gannett is committed to diversity. But if you are black, hispanic, Asian-American or a Pacific Islander you are gone in these most recent layoffs. Take a look at the complaints by the National Assn. of Black Journalists, which has the money and interst to track these issues. It's found the number of black journalists at Gannett has plummeted. Look around you: it's now all largely white women, isn't it? These layoffs have shown the true underlying racism of this company.

  3. 6:58, that is a ridiculous post. Gannett might be stupid, but if anything, they discriminate against the white male, like all newspapers (except for the top editors, of course). Gannett has long hired ill-qualified minorities (and women) and has edited their work to make it fit for print. that has gone on at all newspapers for a long time and will always continue. And any minority or woman with average ability gets promoted way, way up at the expense of the white male.
    Looking at "diversity" when the company is a sinking ship is really, really idiotic.

  4. 7:18 That's the image, but look at the reality by reading the Washington Post piece, which Jim linked above. You got to look at reality, and the discrimination against elderly white males you note is discrimination, isn't it?

  5. 7:18 a.m., "fit for print?" What are you smoking?

  6. 6:58 they didn't track anything. They took a direct quote from an early posting on this blog! Go back and see it's almost the exact words.

  7. GCI Handbook update: "The Gannett Company is committed to diversity and takes seriously its responsibility to ensure that you are laid off regardless of race, gender, religious persuasion or sexual orientation."

  8. 7:18... The "poor, poor, pitiful white guy" routine is really played-out. Please come up with a new way to whine about your station in life.

    Maybe you're fat and balding, too? Alleging discrimination against fat bald guys might be a little more inventive.

    Just a suggestion from another white guy.

  9. 10:17 OK. That works for me.

  10. Speaking of discrimination... anyone receiving "Take Healthy Actions And Save In 2012" cards from Gannett in the mail? My take on this is you're going to be hit with premium increases for medical if you're nothing short of extremely healthy. Most of us have something wrong with ourselves, over weight, high blood pressure, smokers, aging... you name it (or any one of life's little gifts), I fear Gannett will make an excuse for sticking it to us. Before too long we'll be paying them for the honor and privilege of working for them. How healthy is Gannett's CEO? Oh, sorry. I forget my place.

  11. I love how the white male managing editors in charge of hiring love talking about diversity ... until their son applies for a job. Hypocrites.

  12. Anyone who believes that white males have not been discriminated against in the newspaper business are either stupid or have been asleep all these years. 7:18 is right on (not so much with women, but definitely with minorities). For anyone to say gannett is discrimnating against minorities during layoffs now is just a politically correct idiot who should not be taken seriously.

  13. Craig Sevier6/24/2011 1:19 PM

    While I worked for the Reno, Nev., site it was highly diverse. But so what? Diversity doesn't do anything about prejudice and stereotyping. I experienced both first-hand for years, courtesy of some of my superiors.

    A few superiors were extremely fair, admirable and well-rounded individuals. But others had free reign to insult and denigrate any lifestyle outside their Wal-Mart mindset.

  14. Wait, 1:19... "Well-rounded individuals"?

    Is that just another way of referencing those fat bald white guys who are finding it so hard to get ahead in Gannett?

  15. Craig Sevier6/24/2011 4:07 PM

    1:25, 1:19 here... at last someone with humor! Seriously, though, the experience of being judged with stereotypes instead of one's work was galling and patently unprofessional. But there were a few (far too few!) good guys -- and gals -- who, in that kind of hostile "no one will back you up" environment, stood out as people with a much wider and professional worldview than the arrogant pinheads.

  16. What about the issue of AGE???

  17. Gannett is committed to diversity as long as those people work cheaply. While minorities have taken a hit during the layoffs, the largest group to take the hit over the last few years is those over 50, white, black or otherwise.

  18. The "poor, poor, pitiful white guy routine is really played-out. Please come up with a new way to whine about your station in life.

    Maybe you're fat and balding, too? Alleging discrimination against fat bald guys might be a little more inventive."

    I don't know about fat, but balding and short are genetic traits. Every bit as genetic as race.

    Most of the white males who suffer discrimination may have another strike against them. They may also be short, fat, or single.

    Yet, they feel as if the equivalent minority--for example an overweight african american woman--does not suffer the same fate.

    Let's talk about height for a second. Very few short white men make management. Many are suffering the pain of layoffs (partly because they never made manager.)

    Now--mind you--nearly 25% of hispanics are 5' 5" or less. Yet, to discriminate against them based on their height would be--racist. Only short white men are short.

    See where I'm going with this?


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