Three’s A Crowd challenges ad industry hiring practices

Three’s A Crowd, a Los Angeles-based Black creative collective, has launched the In For 13% movement which calls on advertising industry leadership to “publicly and actionably” eliminate racist hiring practices.

The initiative is meant to be a resource for ad agencies which are attempting to make real change in recruitment and professional growth of Black people in the industry.

“While Black people comprise 13 percent of the U.S. population, data shows that only 8.1 percent of people working in advertising are Black,” the group said in a statement. The goal is to ensure that advertising industry leadership proportionately reflects the U.S. Black population as a whole by 2023.

The initiative lays out three phases to achieve more equity in advertising:

  • Self Identification and Accountability: Participating agencies will be asked to readily show their leadership teams.
  • Develop Actionable Toolkits: Agencies will be given clear initiatives and customized toolkits to tackle racial biases specific to them.
  • Track Agency Progress: IN FOR 13% will establish a hub to track the performance of participating agencies.

ALSO READ: Los York adds Mikayla Gamble to director roster

“Let everyone see that the people running advertising agencies do not reflect the world we live in,” says Reonna Johnson, cofounder of Three’s A Crowd. “For true change to occur, advertising agency leadership must be the catalyst.”

Three’s A Crowd originally formed in 2018 as a “network for Black people by Black people.” The catalyst for the organization is attributed to Johnson, Justin Polk (Director / Producer) and Melissa Elston (Executive Producer at Eleven Sound) who were tired of being three of the few Black people at industry events.

“We realized the yearning Black creative professionals have for a safe space to talk about how they feel working in predominantly White career spaces,” says Johnson. “Members want to be unapologetically Black with fellow Black colleagues. The feeling of being alone is real. The feeling of not being seen, valued or heard is real.”

Subscribe: Sign up for our FREE e-lert here.  Stay on top of the latest advertising, film, TV, entertainment and production news!

Over the past two years, the group’s membership has grown from ten more than 150.  

SOURCE: Three’s A Crowd