Saturday, June 3, 2023
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NPR Employees Accuse Company of Racism Amid Mass Layoffs

'This meeting has made me more afraid for the future of public media than any conversation I have had in a very long time... '

(Molly Bruns, Headline USA) National Public Radio recently announced it is cutting back its staff by 10%, leading many of the employees to for woke reason accuse the media group of racism.

According to the Daily Wire, 84 employees were laid off last week and several seasonal podcasts, such as Invisibilia, Louder Than a Riot and Rough Translation were cancelled. The sudden staff cuts followed a projected $30 million shortfall in sponsorships for 2023.

Several high-level executives attended a virtual meeting to answer questions, including CEO John Lansing, who received the brunt of the disgruntled employees’ anger.

One employee called out Lansing for the lack of marketing support for specific podcasts, and questioned why lower-level employees were being punished for these high-level decisions. The employee also named specific executives who previously promised to increase their commitment to diversity but put no accountability measures in place to track the organization’s metrics.

Lansing responded angrily, defending his executive team and pointing to the group’s mission statement.

“I would never, ever, on your worst day, call you out by name in a meeting with 827 people,” he said. “Let’s please keep in mind nobody is happy about this. Nobody is more unhappy about it than those affected, but certainly, everybody in the company, beginning with me, this is the last thing we wanted to do.”

In response, NPR employees accused the CEO of “tone-policing,” making them feel uncomfortable and using civility to make the people of color on the call feel targeted.

“Civility is a weapon wielded by the powerful,” one person wrote, according to screenshots of the chat.

“This meeting has made me more afraid for the future of public media than any conversation I have had in a very long time,” wrote another.

NPR is in the midst of some external struggles as well, with Twitter CEO Elon Musk labeling the taxpayer-funded media group as  “state-affiliated media,” placing the news outlet in the same class as Russia Today and China’s Global Times.

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