STAFF REPORT • February 23, 2021
In case you learn the article within the Los Angeles Occasions on February 21, 2021 concerning the Hollywood International Press Affiliation, you may need been left with the improper impression concerning the Los Angeles Press Membership’s emergency fund. Sadly, LAPC was by no means contacted by the Occasions for a reality examine or a remark, which might have prevented this confusion.
It’s true that LAPC acquired a grant of $125,000 from HFPA final 12 months. With that grant, LAPC (not HFPA) created an emergency fund for journalists in Southern California. The aim of the fund was to assist journalists who had misplaced work and revenue because of the pandemic. Lots of these hit the toughest had been freelancing leisure and sports activities journalists/photographers.
From the beginning, HFPA agreed in writing that they had been “not requesting names or different identification of monetary help recipients out of privateness considerations.” This was an essential situation that ensured funds could be distributed independently of HFPA.
When LAPC introduced this system, we had been express in our bulletins that candidates didn’t should be a member of both group.
We acquired greater than 300 functions for help.
To assessment the functions, LAPC established a screening committee. This committee was made up of volunteers who acquired no compensation and who weren’t allowed to use for support themselves. The committee spent many weekend hours studying concerning the dire wants of journalists within the Southland. There have been journalists who had gone from making an honest residing to having misplaced all their assignments. There have been journalists who couldn’t pay their lease, their medical insurance or put meals on the desk for his or her children. The LAPC committee was diligent in studying how the pandemic had modified the candidates’ lives. We delved into skilled backgrounds to verify the candidates actually had been journalists, we requested how a lot cash folks wanted, what the cash was going for use for, if they’d utilized for cash elsewhere and the way a lot. We additionally requested for revenue experiences earlier than and after the pandemic. It was a troublesome and miserable course of. It was additionally rewarding with the ability to assist fellow journalists in want, even within the smallest means. This could by no means have been potential with out the grant from HFPA.
It’s also true that a number of the candidates had been HFPA members and infrequently additionally LAPC members. We reviewed every applicant on deserves solely, with out regard to affiliation.
After the article within the Occasions, we did an audit of the grants and in contrast them to public listings of HFPA membership. Out of some 170 grants awarded, we subsequently have solely recognized 10 recipients who’re HFPA members. Mixed, these HFPA members acquired simply $7,000 of the $125,000 in complete grants. As a part of our audit, we additionally discovered that there have been HFPA members denied help, as they didn’t meet the factors. General, the speed at which HFPA members acquired grants seems affordable and proportionate to the inhabitants of journalists in our area who misplaced work because of the pandemic.
We’re glad that this final result displays how HFPA had zero enter or affect on who acquired the grants, and that it validates our use of an impartial assessment course of.
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