Eight Black media outlets among 46 news orgs win over $5 million in grants
by California Black Media
Note of gratitude from the SF Bay View staff
We are beyond excited to share with you all the news of an $85,000 award that will be supporting our community journalism program, thanks to the California Public Libraries! Stay tuned as we continue to develop and grow it as an incubator for young people from the hood to get out and tell our own stories.
Deep appreciation for you all, our readers, supporters and community partners, for believing in us, investing in us and continuing to work with us, in the ups and downs of the struggle.
Thank you to our fam at California Black Media, who have continued to be crucial in helping us secure this grant and others.
And, we want to extend a special thanks to our beautiful staff for their hard work over the past years to get us here: Dr. Willie and Mary Ratcliff, publishers; Nube Brown, editor; Griffin Jones, copydesk lead; John Corcoran, CPA; Michael Collett, layout editor; Karpani Burns, web editor; Sierra Bourne, community journalist; Dennis Webb, distribution lead; and all our beautiful contributors and extended Bay View fam for making us the paper that doesn’t just advocate, but fights for Black communities everywhere.
Another thank you to the members of our mighty Bay View Board: Kevin Epps, Arieann Harrison and Gloria Berry.
Don’t forget to Break the News on BayViewTV live with your editor, Nube Brown, every weekday 9-10 a.m. on Instagram @sfbayview.
The SF Bay View
Black media going strong in 2022
Eight Black-owned media organizations serving African American audiences across California are among 46 ethnic media news outlets awarded over $5 million in grants by the state.
The grant program is a collaboration between the California State Library and the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs. It was created to support media outlets serving communities where hate crimes are likely to happen.
The funding will also help raise awareness about a related program: the Stop the Hate campaign that the California Department of Social Services has been spearheading with an initial investment of $20 million over the last year. The campaign funds community-based organizations working to reduce hate crimes and promote intercultural and interracial cooperation and understanding.
“Crimes targeting victims because of their race or ethnicity, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, gender or a disability have no place in the state of California,” said Gov. Gavin Newsom.
The eight Black-owned media organizations targeting predominantly Black audiences that received grants are: California Black Media ($400,000); The Black Voice News in Riverside County ($100,000); L.A. Focus ($96,000) in Los Angeles County; Pace News in Los Angeles County ($95,150); The Precinct Reporter in Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Orange counties ($88,000); The San Francisco Bay View ($85,000); The Sac Cultural Hub in Sacramento County ($80,000); and Indian Voices in San Diego County ($59,741).
According to the California State Library, the grants will allow ethnic media outlets to hire or contract with “specialized reporters, fellowships and internships at ethnic media outlets, news briefings and roundtables, digital and social media content, community gatherings and partnerships with grassroots organizations and Community Based Organizations.”
“We live in the state with the most racial, ethnic and cultural diversity in the United States. Yet, the deep tensions and misconceptions among us can trigger violence and rip our communities apart,” said Regina Brown Wilson, executive director of California Black Media (CBM).
“It is critical for media to understand who their audiences are, where those people live, who they live next to, and what the potential challenges and opportunities may be.”
“This funding is necessary because it equips media organizations with resources we need to educate, inform and connect the communities we serve, encouraging honest conversations, which we believe are opportunities to teach each other and learn from each other,” Wilson continued.
The grant program is a part of the Asian and Pacific Islander Equity Budget, a three-year investment of $166.5 million allocated to address the sharp increase in hate incidents.
“The California Asian American & Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus (API Caucus) and I pushed for these funds to help strengthen California’s more than 350 ethnic media outlets,” said Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco). “We’re looking forward to subsequent grant awards being even more helpful to more ethnic media outlets around the state.”
Joe Bowers, a Los Angeles County-based researcher, will be working on identifying multicultural communities vulnerable to hate crimes that Black-owned newspapers in the state serve. He says he looks forward to providing data that will be key to helping CBM’s partner publications target their audiences with information that elevates and promotes interracial and cross-cultural relationships in their communities.
“There have been a number of demographic shifts in the state. It is critical for media to understand who their audiences are, where those people live, who they live next to, and what the potential challenges and opportunities may be,” Bowers continued.
Several supporters and news publications said they are pleased with the intention of the program and support scaling it up over the next few years.
Most publications are expected to kick off their programs over the next month.
California Black Media, serving California’s Black press, boasts a record of ensuring that the Black viewpoint remains central to all the debates that shape life in California. Members of the CBM staff can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.