Harvey Mason Junior, the interim CEO and board chairman of the Recording Academy, recently announced that the board has written out a five-step diversity inclusion initiative following the controversial firing of Deborah Dugan.
Obtained by the USA Today, the memo features Harvey Junior explaining how he joined the board to make things better and to foster an environment in which all types of music and people were celebrated equally.
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The memo goes on to say that women of color and other disenfranchised groups have fought for the right to be included, and they’ve found allies across the nation who are helping them fight for the much-needed change.
Furthermore, Mason also announced a new diversity task-force that will address the issue of including women in music organizations. As most know, this comes just a few hours after Sean “Diddy” Combs took the stage at the Clive Davids pre-Grammy gala and accused the industry of never having respect for hip-hop.
“Black music has never been respected by the Grammys to the point that it should be.” Mr. Combs said in his speech that what he said was nothing new, and change has been needed for a long time, in a number of different industries.
Deborah Dugan and her lawyers poked holes in the memo when they released their own statement claiming that the Recording Academy had already committed themselves to diversity and inclusion, however, it didn’t work. Her letter, through her representatives, accused Harvey Mason Junior of being the same person who put her on leave after she called for “increased diversity.”
As it was previously reported, Dugan was suddenly fired and put on leave after an allegation that she was bullying people in the organization. She later filed a discrimination complaint against the academy, accusing them of discrimination, harassment, unequal pay, and more.
When Dugan stopped by the set of Good Morning America on Thursday, she dived into the details of her complaint and stated that there was a clear conflict of interest in the Recording Academy, especially during the voting process.