NYC Agencies Subpoenaed For Diversity Probe During Ad Week
The Human Rights Commission has subpoenaed 16 executives at New York agencies to probe their supposedly poor history of hiring black people at public hearings during Advertising Week September 25 through September 29. A nifty strategy by the Human Rights Commission but one question that doesn't seem to have been addressed publicly surrounding this issue is how many black people actually want to work for an ad agency. Currently, in the 16 agencies the Commission is looking into, nine percent of employees are black. In New York, blacks represent 25 percent of the population. It's the gap between Nine and 25 that have critics steamed.
Perhaps the probe will reveal whether the lack of black employed in ad agencies is deliberate or whether it's just a representation of how many African Americans have an interest in advertising. Certainly, things could be done to at least make those other than white country club boys aware of advertising as a possible career path through job fairs and other forms of outreach. But all that should really matter is finding really smart, really creative people no matter what color they are.