Taking Action in the Children’s Media Industry
BLACK LIVES MATTER
Black stories matter.
Black characters matter.
Black voices matter.
Black writers, creators, producers, educators, artists, and executives matter.
Black children matter.
As thinkers, makers, and distributors of kids’ content, we influence the lives of children and families. That position of influence carries an enormous responsibility. Kids turn our pages and watch our shows. Kids play our games and with our toys. Kids learn from our curricula and sing to our melodies. The content we make and the creators who make it matter.
Real change requires breaking norms and paradigms and we realize there is much more to be done. We ask ourselves and our members to stand up, speak up, listen, and lift each other up:
In the stories we tell.
In the characters we feature and how we portray them.
In the people we hire.
In the companies we work for, and with.
In those we promote and recommend and support.
At Children’s Media Association we are:
- Making a long-term commitment across our events, programming, and leadership to increase diverse representation and encourage challenging conversations to ensure that our association reflects our global audiences.
- Today, CMA partnered with Common Sense for an extremely important event, Mirrors and Windows: Why Kids Need to See Themselves Reflected in the Media They Watch. The event focused on the importance of racial equality and inclusive representation in the media. We’ll discuss the impact on kids of seeing (and not seeing) others and themselves on screens big and small and there will also be tips to help parents find positive entertainment options for their children.
- As part of the Children’s Media Association Mentorship program, we have 12 up and coming professionals from TAP (The Animation Project) joining as mentees. The Animation Project (TAP) is a non-profit therapeutic workforce development program unlocking the professional and creative door for NYC young people with drive and nascent animation talent. TAP develops New York City youth for the local animation industry through software training and prepares them with personal and professional development.
- CMA is forming a Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Committee, made up of a small group of CMA members with backgrounds and interest in promoting diversity, anti-racism and alliance across difference. They will be sharing ideas and resources and reviewing our event calendar, messaging and offers to ensure that we are mindful of including diverse voices and engaging topics of interest that will benefit our community. In an effort to increase opportunity for participation, we are considering adding subcommittees to address specific initiatives. If you are interested, please, reach out with your name, which CMA chapter you are a member of and why you are interested in serving on a subcommittee.
- At Children’s Media Association we know that the most impactful change starts at home and we will continue to reflect and look at our own culture and inclusive practices to cultivate a community of learning, sharing and collaboration so that our members can bring that energy and practices to the larger children’s media community throughout the world.
- Finally, we recognize that black lives and experiences differ across the globe and we encourage our international members to participate as we develop programming that impacts the global children’s media community in a meaningful way.
We challenge all of us to use our positions and our platforms, whatever they may be, to do better, to take action, and to stand up…together!
Here are a couple places to start – please keep an eye on your email and social for more information and programming:
- Children’s Media Association Blog – Resources About Racism and Bias for the Children’s Media Community
- Diversity Resource Lists
- Children’s Media Association Members Facebook Group – The place for members to connect and share resources
Some of our best initiatives come from our community; if you have ideas please reach out we’d love to hear from you: firstname.lastname@example.org
Image credit: BlackLivesMatter.com