October 17, 2022

Congressman Castro Calls on EEOC and FCC to Prevent Discrimination and Strengthen Equal Opportunity for Latinos in American Media

SAN ANTONIO – Last week, Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20) sent letters to the chairs of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), calling on the agencies to improve data-sharing practices to better ensure equal employment opportunity within the American media industry.

“Earlier this month, I released the findings of a new Government Accountability Office report showing that Latino underrepresentation in the American media and entertainment industries has barely improved over the last decade. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Federal Communications Commission have an essential oversight role in combating discrimination and racism, and I strongly urge the agencies to improve their data-sharing practices to enforce our nation’s promise of equal opportunity. Media and entertainment are the main narrative-creating and image-defining institutions in American society, and stronger enforcement of equal opportunity within these industries will have a profound and positive impact on the way that Latino stories are told in the United States and across the world,” said Congressman Castro.

In the letters, Congressman Castro asks the agencies to enter into a joint memorandum of understanding that requires the EEOC to routinely share information with the FCC on discrimination charges filed against broadcasters and cable and satellite television operators. This information would allow the FCC to evaluate operator compliance with federal equal opportunity requirements when deciding whether to approve station licensing renewals. The letter to the EEOC also asks the agency to improve its approach to identifying local unions that are required to file EEO-3 reports, which detail workforce demographic data including membership, applicant, and referral information by race/ethnicity and sex.

On October 5, 2022, Congressman Castro released the findings of a 2022 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on Latino representation in American media. In the report, GAO identified several steps that the EEOC and FCC should take to ensure equal opportunity for Latinos within the media industry. Last week's letters formalize Congressman Castro’s request for the EEOC and FCC to take the actions recommended by GAO.

Congressman Castro’s letter to the FCC can be viewed here.

Congressman Castro’s letter to the EEOC can be viewed here.