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KUT Newsroom Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan

Education reporter Claire McInerny conducts an interview outside.

Our journalists are committed to the work of inclusion and have chosen to formulate a statement that we all support: 

The audience we don't yet serve is as important as the audience we serve now.

KUT News reports with accuracy and fairness by actively listening to and telling the stories of all Texans. We are committed to recruiting, hiring and cultivating a diverse newsroom; maintaining a supportive and inclusive work culture of collaboration and respect.

In order to make our vision of a more inclusive, diverse and equitable newsroom a reality, we have committed to the following actions, organized around internal and external audiences. 

  • The newsroom will engage with the communities that we cover through a minimum of four community meetings, one per quarter, starting no later than winter 2021. The goal will be to create relationships, hear what is on residents’ minds, and use the information we receive to better inform coverage. 
  • The source tracking tool used by KUT News since 2018 will be expanded across all segments of the newsroom (including multimedia and “Texas Standard”). The newsroom will create benchmarks and quarterly reports for internal and external audiences to keep track of progress. The benchmarks and next report will be set by fall 2020.
  • The newsroom will create an index of sources and a pipeline to new sources that better reflect our coverage areas by fall 2020.  
  • To create clearly defined metrics for accountability, efforts to promote DEI and include new voices in the conceptualizing of stories and sources will become an item on the yearly evaluation process of all members of our newsroom, starting with the next review. Complete
  • KUT News, “Texas Standard” and the multimedia team will revise or create new internal mission statements to help guide coverage, with an emphasis on public service journalism and our role helping underserved communities by spring 2021.
  • KUT will review hosting from local to national programming, as well as programming content to see how we reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of the region we serve. We will create an action plan for addressing gaps by fall 2020.
  • Language is power, so the newsroom will update and revise the language we use to talk about and to communities of color and reflect it in a Style Book by fall 2020, with the understanding that this has to be a continuous conversation.
  • In order to dismantle the thought processes behind editorial decisions, the newsroom will undergo cultural competency training by fall 2020.  
  • KUT will review sonic IDs by Oct. 31 to create a benchmark and create a goal and plan to balance representation of voices and experiences by fall 2020.
  • We will update the KUT Newsroom Ethics Handbook by fall 2020.
  • The newsroom is committed to reaching out and participating in professional organizations. Leaders will work with reporters to identify more opportunities for professional development, including conferences, training, mentorship and networking opportunities.
  • Provide management training to deal effectively with discrimination issues, and create a clear path for conflict resolution inside our newsroom by fall 2020.
  • We will update the onboarding process by fall 2020 to make sure all new members of our newsroom understand and partake in our efforts for inclusion in our coverage and structures.
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