BIG GET BIGGER WHILE MOST PAPERS DRIFT Latest Circulation Figures Show Declines

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By: Staff reports

An official at the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) earlier this week responded to Lorraine Branham’s forced resignation from the Tallahassee Democrat, recommending that the paper hire more African Americans for key newsroom positions.

Anthony Viegbesie, president of the NAACP’s Tallahassee, Fla., branch, said at a news conference that he was told on two occasions by Democrat Publisher Michael Pate that he was under pressure from whites who complained about two many black faces in the paper, reported The Associated Press.
Pate remembers telling Viegbesie that a segment of the white community does not want to see blacks in the newspapers, but he doesn’t heed those complaints.
Tallahassee’s population is 28% black according to the 1990 census and the Democrat has a 22.4% minority presence on staff, according to the American Society of Newspaper Editors’ annual newsroom employment census.
In an interview last month with Journey, the Florida A&M University newspaper, Branham said she had been told ?I was turning this paper into an Ebony,? referring to the magazine of black culture.
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Staff reports


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