Michael B. Jordan Asks Hollywood To ‘Commit To Black Hiring’
Actor Michael B. Jordan has asked Hollywood to ‘commit to black hiring’ across the film and television industry.
The 33-year-old gave the passionate speech during a Black Lives Matter protest in Los Angeles, California.
While addressing protesters, the Black Panther actor said he wanted to use his power to ‘demand diversity’.
I want us to invest in black staff. I’m proud to have an inclusion rider and all that good stuff, and I use my power to demand diversity, but it’s time the studios and agencies and all these buildings we stand in front of to do the same.
You committed to a 50/50 gender parity in 2020. Where is the challenge to commit to black hiring? Black content led by black executives, black consultants. Are you policing our storytelling as well? Let us bring our darkness to the light.
Black culture: the sneakers, sports, comedic culture that you guys love so much. We’ve dealt with discrimination at every turn. Can you help fund black brands, companies, cultural leaders, black organisations?
Jordan isn’t alone in his thoughts; news came out this week that Fantastic Four director Josh Trank wanted to cast a black Sue Storm alongside Jordan’s character of Johnny Storm, something which received ‘pretty heavy pushback’ from the studio.
He also spoke about playing Oscar Grant in the 2013 film Fruitvale Station at the protests.
Grant was a 22-year-old African American man who was killed by police on New Year’s Day 2009. Police were responding to reports of a fight on a crowded Bay Area Rapid Transit train returning from San Francisco.
The officer who shot Grant, Johannes Mehserle, was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
Speaking about playing Grant, Jordan said to the crowd: ‘I’ve played four very important characters that have affected my life, Oscar Grant was one of them.’
Jordan touched upon the topic of his production company Outlier Society and how he’s only going to hire private security for its events.
He added that if there are any companies he works with that have financial ties to the police, that they would have to ‘re-look at our business’.
We have to stop hiring the police. We have to cut off their support, that’s why I’m committing to hiring private security at all my events. Private security only.
All my brands that deal with me; if you have racist beliefs, if you have a racist bone in your body, if you’re not with me and if you don’t stand with people who look like me, then you don’t need to be with me.
Thousands of people have been calling for police forces to be defunded following the death of George Floyd, something which Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has already announced to do.
Defunding the police is seen as an alternative to police reform, and proposes that a portion of the money spent on the police should be allocated elsewhere, for example to other social and economic services.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org/talk
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