39 employees at Swedish Radio have had enough. They believe that SR both discriminates in various recruitments, monitors news concerning minorities, and does not take racism seriously.
– I and my colleagues at Radio Sweden have been asked if we know anyone who sells weapons, and if I know anyone who chews the drug cat. I do not think that my colleagues had said such things to a white colleague, says Mona Ismail Jama, one of the initiators, to DN .
But SR’s CEO Cilla Benkö claims that much of the call is not true.
SR is accused by its own employees, among other things, of not monitoring issues concerning minorities, and that many groups are “severely underrepresented” among the employees.
THE BEGINNING OF THE APPEAL
“We write due to the fact that the recent protests and conversations, during Black Lives Matter, have exposed serious and profound problems that Swedish Radio is dragging along. The problems, which have existed for a long time but have become extra visible and tangible now, concern both the work environment within the company and journalism itself. ” , it says in the appeal that DN has read.
Host Kodjo Akolor is one of the signatories. He tells DN that it is “white” on most large media companies and that SR does not represent the entire population.
– I just need to walk around the offices of the big media companies to see what it looks like. On DN, on Aftonbladet, on Expressen, on SVT, on TV4, on Kanal 5. It looks exactly the same behind the camera and in the executive rooms – and in many ways also in front of the camera.
Asked if she knows anyone who sells guns
The appeal also states that blacks and other racist employees feel “ ignored, suspected and questioned in the newsrooms”.
Sveriges Radio’s CEO Cilla Benkö, tells DN that she was “super sad and damn worried” by the call, but that the issues are prioritized on SR. She says that 26 percent of the employees have a foreign background.
– Most of what is written in this document is incorrect, or the relevant facts are missing. And it is clear that it affects my view of how serious the problem is, when I notice that there are factual errors in their descriptions. But regardless of the factual errors, the feelings behind them are true – we have employees who do not feel seen.