Presente | Tell Gov. Cuomo: Investigate discrimination in Big Publishing!
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Tell Gov. Cuomo: Investigate discrimination in Big Publishing!

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    The Message

    Dear Governor Cuomo,

    We are calling on you to direct the NYS Division of Human Rights to open an industry-wide investigation on potential discriminatory practices in hiring staff and in contracting with authors in the publishing industry. Issuing an investigation will help address the Latinx crisis in U.S. publishing and can provide the information needed to ensure Latinx titles and staff are represented across the 'Big 5' publishing houses, all located in New York City.

    Latinx people constitute 18% of the total US population, but only an estimated 3% of the some 350,000 books published each year are written by Latinx people. And Latinx people working in publishing amounts to a dismal 6%. When we dig deeper, the figures are even starker: Latinos make up only 3% of executives in publishing, only 2% of editors, only 4% of the sales force, only 5% of the marketing team, and only 5% of interns. These abysmal figures not only indicate why we need #DignidadLiteraria (literary dignity), but that the U.S. publishing industry may be discriminating against Latinx communities.

    We urge you to open an investigation into the 'Big 5' publishing houses that will get us closer to attaining the transformative structural changes our communities are demanding.

    Thank you.

    Latinx communities and other marginalized groups are left out — and often vilified — by big publishing companies. Who controls our stories has power over our lives, influences how we are perceived and treated on a daily basis, how policy is created, and how solutions are discussed. Misrepresentations of Latinx people and migrants in literature has a lasting cultural impact that affects our human rights, economic power, and overall well-being.

    #DignidadLiteraria is continuing to build momentum and power thanks to your incredible support! Together, we've secured an unprecedented commitment from the leadership of Macmillan USA to transform their publishing practices and include substantial increases in Latinx titles and staff across the entire company. Dozens of incredibly powerful events led by writers and activists have mobilized thousands across the country. And, we’re not done yet!

    In light of the troubling practices and outcomes in publishing, we are calling on NY State Gov. Cuomo to direct the NYS Division of Human Rights to open an industry-wide investigation on potential discriminatory practices in hiring staff and in contracting with authors in the publishing industry. Opening an investigation into the ‘Big 5’ publishing houses will get us closer to attaining the transformative structural changes our communities are demanding.

    Help hold the U.S. publishing industry accountable by calling on Governor Cuomo to open an investigation.

    References:
    Vox: The controversy over the new immigration novel American Dirt, explained
    Latino Rebels: The #DignidadLiteraria Campaign Issues Statement About AMERICAN DIRT Book Event Cancellations
    1A: What The Controversy Over ‘American Dirt’ Tells Us About Publishing And Authorship
    NBC News: #DignidadLiteraria calls meeting with 'American Dirt' publisher 'a victory'

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