Freelance Reporter | Social Media Columnist | Mentor | Speaker | Leadership | UNT Grad Student
Author: Rebecca Aguilar
Journalism is my life. I've been a reporter for 36 years. My office is the world. During my career I have been honored with 50 journalism awards and nominations. I'm also an Emmy-nominated TV commentator. I'm currently the VP of Programs for SPJ Fort Worth Chapter. I'm also the former VP of Online for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.
Sources with Mundo Hispánico say they need to start looking for jobs, because the digital site faces a shutdown. They got the bad news in an email Monday morning from the President of the Cox Media Group (CMG) which owns Mundo Hispánico.
The announcement came from Kim Guthrie, President of Cox Media Group. Her email partly reads…
CMG is focused on overcoming the disruption in our industry and competing to win in the markets we serve. To achieve that, we are focusing our resources on businesses that have clear paths to profitability and long-term growth.
She goes on to say…
…After careful consideration, we’ve decided to sell or sunset both the Mundo Hispanico and Southern Kitchen businesses.
Her email mentioned CMG is looking for the right buyers.
…we will work to find the right owners for Mundo Hispanico and Southern Kitchen. If we are unable to find a buyer, we plan to close Southern Kitchen and the national Vertical portion of Mundo Hispanico by the end of the quarter.
You can read the rest of the email provided to me from a few sources.
Reporters in Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Los Angeles, Orlando, and one in North Carolina are expected to lose their jobs. There are also other journalists at the headquarters in Atlanta who will also be shown the door.
According to a source, the national correspondents for the digital site could be out of work by the end of June and the ones in Atlanta may get a few more months on the job.
Sources started telling me early Friday that Entravision Communications was going to have massive layoffs at television stations around the country.
It happened at the Univision station in Las Vegas which is owned by Entravision.
Reporter Juan Juarez confirmed it in his goodbye video he shared on Twitter. Here are parts of his video translated from Spanish to English.
Hi friends on Facebook and all my social media platforms. I wanted to share in person and on this video that they just let us go. Entravision Communications, the station in Las Vegas decided to let go of just about everyone including me, and many of my colleagues. Now they’re going to do the produce our local news from El Paso. I just wanted to say thank you, thank you because I know many people trusted me in the past two-and-half years while I worked at Entravision Las Vegas.
You opened your hearts in front of the camera that I carried in the heat and in the cold, it didn’t matter, and many people trusted in me. You supported me and you opened your hearts and homes to share many of your stories.
…This is not easy, because it’s a hard situation. There have been many tears and feelings now that this corporation make these kind of decision, and don’t take you into consideration. The truth is they do it suddenly without letting you know. We can only push forward…
Juarez was one of the many reporters who covered the Las Vegas Massacre in October 2017. He had grown very fond of Las Vegas and the people he served. Unfortunately he says the loyalty and commitment meant nothing to Entravision.
Thank you to all the viewers who share your stories with me and my co-workers. We leave knowing we did great work, we dedicated ourselves to the community, and unfortunately this did not matter to Entravision Communications.
Mensaje de despedida de Univision Las Vegas. ENTRAVISION COMMUNICATIONS Cierra el canal local de LAS VEGAS y envían operaciones a El Paso Texas. GRACIAS A TODOS QUIENES CONFIARON EN MI Y COMPARTIERON SUS HISTORIAS 🙏🏼❤️ Somos fuertes y Dios Sabe El Destino. pic.twitter.com/c8q3cXZbbh
A total of 13 people from news were shown the door. They included a technical director, editor, three MMJ’s, a female anchor and two engineers. Two photographers and two male anchors remain and may gather news for the El Paso news production.
Reporter Jasmina Gonzalez fought back tears in her goodbye video she also posted on Twitter. Here’s part of it translated from Spanish to English.
I will no longer be working for Univision, but I want to tell you that I take a little piece of all your hearts, they are right here with me. Thank you for your trust. Thank you for your support, for opening the doors to your homes, for always being there for us. I want to say I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart.
No es un adiós si no un hasta pronto. Muchas muchas gracias por su confianza, por abrirme las puertas de su hogar. Me duele que se haya tomado esta decisión por parte de Entravision, pero es una decisión que tengo que respetar. Nos vamos con la frente bien en alto. pic.twitter.com/O5242511oB
I have contacted Collins via Facebook to find out why the company made this decision, and how many other employees at other Entravision stations face termination. Will this save Entravision millions of dollars? Stay tuned.
According to Entravision’s website:
Entravision Communications Corporation is a diversified Spanish-language media company utilizing a combination of television, radio and digital operations to reach Latino consumers across the United States, as well as the border markets of Mexico. Entravision is the largest affiliate group of both the top-ranked Univision television network and Univision’s UniMas network, with television stations in 20 of the nation’s top 50 Latino markets. The company owns and/or operates 58 primary television stations and also operates one of the nation’s largest groups of primarily Spanish-language radio stations, consisting of 49 owned and operated radio stations. Additionally, Entravision has a variety of cross-platform digital content and sales offerings designed to capitalize on the company’s leadership position within the Latino broadcasting community. Entravision shares of Class A Common Stock are traded on The New York Stock Exchange under the symbol: EVC.
If the company is having money problems, it is not showing at the top. According to Salary.Com. CEO Walter F. Ulloa at Entravision Communications, made $4,751,204 in total compensation. More information on Salary.Com 2016 Report.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has settled a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit against Off the Air, II, Inc., which does business as Nick’s Sports Grill, a sports bar in Rowlett, Texas.
The EEOC says Off the Air will pay $24,000 to a former female bartender.
An EEOC investigation revealed Taylor King was forced to leave her job after she changed the bar’s mandatory wardrobe to something different. Nick’s requires female bartenders and waitresses to wear hot pants and tight tops. King who was pregnant decided to change her wardrobe to something more comfortable. She replaced her hot pants with Capri pants, and wore loser tops.
The EEOC says a General Manager told King the owner would not like what she was wearing and that’s when she was asked to leave. King filed a complaint with the EEOC.
The lawsuit settlement also requires the bar owners to:
Pay a $24,000 financial settlement to King.
Prohibit future discrimination and retaliation for complaining about it.
Disseminate specific parts of its employee handbook to all employees.
Provide annual training on pregnancy and other forms of discrimination.
Report all complaints of discrimination to the EEOC as agreed as part of three-year settlement.
Impose discipline up to termination on any manager who discriminates based on sex or permits such conduct to occur under his or her supervision.
Post a notice on employee bulletin boards about the decree, explaining procedures for reporting discrimination.
EEOC Trial Attorney Toby Wosk Costas says…
Even bars and clubs with provocative uniforms cannot discriminate by using the dress code requirement to oust a pregnant employee…When the short, tight outfit no longer worked, Taylor King no longer had a job. She could have continued to work at Nick’s had she not become pregnant. Under civil rights laws, that’s pregnancy discrimination, which is a form of discrimination based on sex.
Taylor King, the former bartender had the last word.
Just because you look different as a pregnant woman, it doesn’t mean you can’t do your job. I want people to know that if you feel you are being discriminated against, you should do something about it.
MY OPINION, YES I HAVE ONE
Taylor King is a brave woman. Now her bravery has changed the way pregnant employees are treated at bars and restaurants where they are required to wear sexy clothes on the job.
Her discrimination lawsuit should also teach male bosses to have more compassion for pregnant women, and realize they want to work.
Also kudos to the EEOC that is always fighting to rid the world of discrimination.
IF YOU ARE BEING DISCRIMINATED, FILE A COMPLAINT
If you believe that you have been discriminated against at work because of your race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information, you can file a Charge of Discrimination. A charge of discrimination is a signed statement asserting that an employer, union or labor organization engaged in employment discrimination. It requests EEOC to take remedial action. >>Filed a Complaint.
One photo can tell you the strength of a woman. Can you imagine what 300 can do?
More than 300 high-quality photos are being shared with the public. The images are of women and girls in two regions of the world: Bihar, India and Louisiana and Mississippi in the United States. It’s a positive look into their lives and what they are doing in their communities.
The collection gives a positive look into the lives of women and girls who are located in different parts of the world. What they have in common are their leadership qualities. They are in decision-making roles, accessing and providing quality reproductive health care and are actively involved in their communities.
All the photos were taken by two world-renowned women photographers, Nina Robinson and Paula Bronstein.
After almost fourteen years at KDFW-TV in Dallas, I was let go.
But guess what? I wasn’t devastated, hurt, sad or even afraid about my future. I didn’t think the world had ended.
The Fox station took my job, but not my talent, years of experience, many awards and my circle of trusted friends.
I knew I was going to be OK.
THE ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES
If you ever get fired, remember you’ll be fine. Don’t blame yourself. I sure didn’t.
Don’t be embarrassed to tell people. It’s part of life.
Don’t be afraid to be judged. I never worried about what people thought of me losing my job.
Surround yourself with positive people you trust.
Stay positive and set goals.
Get out there and share your talent.
IT’S A NEW BEGINNING FOR SOMETHING BETTER
Getting fired was the best thing that ever happened to me. The opportunities I found and created have been endless.
I decided on four main goals: mentor, volunteer, consult and lead. Those goals have led me to jobs, opportunities and a paycheck. Here is some of what I have accomplished so far in ten years:
-I’m a successful freelance reporter/writer/producer. AARP was my first client.
-Served as Vice President of Online for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists better known as NAHJ. Volunteer position for four years. I sat on board for a total of six years.
-Currently serve as Vice President for the Society of Professional Journalists, Fort Worth Chapter
-Founder of Wise Latinas Linked, the largest Latina networking group on Facebook and LinkedIn with combined membership of 10,000 women.
-Founder of Latinas in Journalism, the largest Latina journalism group of 1,800 women on Facebook.
-Public speaker on Latina and journalism issues. My favorite is “Surviving the Unexpected.”
-I’m a media and diversity watchdog. I fight for the rights of all journalists and push for more diversity in newsrooms across the country.
-Learned how to build websites from scratch.
-Learned how to code. Yes I know CSS and HTML.
-Continue to mentor girls in high school.
-Continue to mentor dozens of journalists at different levels in their careers.
-Served as social media manager for three years for NAHJ while VP of Online.
-Social media columnist for Latina Style magazine, a national publication.
-Social media consultant for nonprofits.
-Video producer for nonprofits. Thanks Rafael McDonnell for my first job.
-Offered $10,000 scholarship to get my Masters in Journalism at the University of North Texas. I am in my first year.
-Traveled to Israel on a journalism fellowship with Fuente Latina, a nonprofit news site.
-Serve currently and in the past as moderator and panelist on numerous journalism and social media panels around the country.
-Nominated in 2015 for Lone Star Emmy for “Best TV Commentator.”
-News consultant. Thanks Charlie Haldeman for my first gig teaching reporters how to report.
-Awarded two national awards for “Social Networking Leader” in 2011 and 2013 by Latinos in Social Media also known as LATISM.
I keep thinking how much I would have missed in life, stuck in the same newsroom, covering another crime or telling viewers as I stood on the side of the road “It’s cold out here.”
Don’t get me wrong, TV news is important, but sometimes you need a shove out the door to find something better. Today I continue helping people and telling stories.
More importantly, I also got to see my son grow up and go to college. I don’t know how many journalists have missed seeing their kids grow up. I’m lucky my son and I have great memories of me picking him up from junior high and going to McDonalds to talk.
I may not make the six-figure salary I earned during my TV days in Dallas, but then I was never motivated by money. My experiences as a TV reporter and a fired reporter have been priceless.
Thank you to John Boos, the best husband in the world. Thank you to some of my former coworkers like Saul Garza, Todd Eastman, and many others who stood by my side. Thank you to Rafael Olmeda who was president of NAHJ at the time and defended me. Thanks to many NAHJ members and a gazillion friends and fans who have been my support system since my firing. You helped me survive. Gracias!
Freedom feels good! Happy Anniversary to me.
FYI if you want the back story on why I was fired, go to Unclebarky.com. It’s was unfair, but I’m still standing.
Dana Loesch, the NRA’s spokeswoman is paid big bucks by the organization to defend it. I understand that it is her job to “spin” information and protect the image of the National Rifle Association.
Once again Loesch did her job by moving the focus of the Parkland, Florida school massacre and the gun control issue from the NRA to the media. This time Loesch said the media “loves” mass shootings for ratings.
It’s called spin. Her spin.
I have covered too many murders in my 36 years as a reporter that I have lost count. They are the most difficult assignments to cover. I have only been to one mass shooting, but a death is a death.
I have shed tears on assignment, because it hurts to see people hurt. On the other hand I know that I have a job where I can help people understand, cope, and sometimes solve murders. I have never covered a murder for ratings. In fact, television viewers have often told me they turn the channel, because they are tired of hearing “bad news.”
Now please listen Anastasiya Bolton. She’s a crime and justice reporter in Denver. She has a strong and powerful message to the NRA. “I’m an expert in mass shootings. I’m a journalists in a war zone here at home.” >> Commentary: I’m an expert in mass shootings
Let’s be honest, Dana Loesch found her way to get more TV time and ratings by making a malicious statement. As journalists we can take it. She won’t be the first “talking head” to attack us for our work and definitely not the last.