General + Regulatory + Telecom + Media NewsCanadian media still overwhelmingly white, says latest CAJ diversity survey

Canadian media still overwhelmingly white, says latest CAJ diversity survey

About 75.5% of Canadian newsrooms are white, rising to 84% when you reach the supervisory level, according to the third annual Canadian Newsroom Diversity Survey from the Canadian Association of Journalists (CAJ).

The most comprehensive breakdown of Canadian newsrooms to date, the CAJ collected data on 6,035 journalists from 273 newsrooms across radio, television, digital and print media for the 2023 survey, working with data and analytics experts at Qlik to develop an interactive website to visualize the results.

Reflecting data from participating newsrooms, including CBC/Radio-Canada, Global News, Canadaland, Metroland Media, and blogTO, among others, 19.3% of journalists within the organizations surveyed identified as a visible minority, with 5.2% identifying as Indigenous. The survey found about seven in 10 newsrooms have no Indigenous or visible minority staff in their top three leadership positions. Where minority journalists are hired, CAJ found they tend to be concentrated in a handful of large newsrooms.

This year’s findings highlight that women, while representing just over 51% of newsroom staff – compared to 48.3% who identify as men and 0.3% who identify as non-binary – are more likely to work in part-time roles with 62.3% of part-time employees identifying as women. Black journalists are the most likely to work in part-time or intern roles compared to full-time or supervisor roles, with 2.5% of supervisors, 3.8% of full-time, 5.3% of part-time journalists and 4.6% of interns identifying as Black. Asian journalists saw the biggest overall decrease over all three years of the survey. In 2023 they made up 7.4% of journalists, down from 10% in 2021.

“While we recognize the pace of progress on systemic changes are incremental, this year’s report identifies some year-over-year trends that highlight the need for careful examination and additional conversation,” said CAJ President Brent Jolly, in a release.

“There’s a lot of work to be done to get the Canadian journalism industry to be more reflective of the communities it serves,” added Zane Schwartz, CAJ national chair and survey lead.

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Connie Thiessen
Connie Thiessen
Connie has worked coast-to-coast as a reporter, editor, anchor and host at CKNW and News 1130 in Vancouver, News 95.7 and CBC in Halifax, and CFCW Edmonton, among other stations. With a passion for music, film and community service, she led News 95.7 to a 2013 Atlantic Journalism Award and regional RTDNA award for Best Radio Newscast. More recently, she was nominated for Music Journalist of the Year at Canadian Music Week 2019. To report a typo or error please email -

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