S4C create new Diversity and Inclusion Officer role after BAME representation criticism

S4C Headquarters in Carmarthen. Picture by Rhodri ap Dyfrig (CC BY-SA 4.0)

S4C has announced that it is creating the new post of Diversity and Inclusion Officer as part of its “commitment to reflecting modern Wales” on screen and behind the camera.

The move comes after the Welsh language channel was criticised on one of its own programmes for not including more BAME people in the decision-making process.

S4C said that its aim was to improve the way that Wales and Welsh people are reflected across its services as well as in the sector that creates its content.

The broadcaster wants to see and hear new contributors, voices and communities both on screen and creating content for S4C by building connections with specific those who are under-represented in the sector – particularly black, Asian and ethnic minorities (BAME), disabled people and LGBTQ+ people.

“As a public body, we must lead by example,” Owen Evans, S4C’s Chief Executive, said. “So as part of our response to Black Lives Matter and to try and speed up the change that is needed to be an inclusive broadcaster, we’re appointing our first Diversity and Inclusion Officer.

“The aim of the job is to bridge S4C and those communities that are maybe unsure of the opportunities to come and work in the Welsh television sector. We want to reflect the country in its entirety, and we want to hear from you.”

 

‘Voice’

In June the political campaigner, Melanie Owen, in an interview broadcast on current affairs programme Y Byd yn ei Le, said that having BAME people in front of a camera was not enough.

“I think these people need to be in the meetings,” she said. “Not just in front of the camera – they need to be making the choices. About what is going to go on the television, what’s going to be in a programme.

“They should be able to communicate their experiences and say ‘I have these experiences, BAME people like me can relate to that, or actually that isn’t relevant to us at all, why can’t we give that person a voice?’ It comes down to who is making the decisions, too.”

The full job description is available on the S4C website.

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