The National Association of Hispanic Publications Inc. (NAHP) has amended its bylaws to allow Spanish and bilingual publications who are not Hispanic-owned to join as active General Members.
Major Spanish-language newspapers that are owned by general market newspaper chains, such as Dallas's Fort Worth Diario La Estrella (Knight Ridder) and Al Dia (Belo Corp.), will now be able to join as active General Members of the NAHP.
"The core of the amendment will allow non-Hispanic owned publications to become active members. It was an ongoing request and desire of these associate publications. Independent of the decision of the Board of Directors, the very act of putting this topic on the table for discussion was a major step forward for the organization. It was our historical responsibility," stated Jose Luis B. Garza, Vice President for Membership of the NAHP.
"In a country where there is a free market economy, we cannot stop the creation of media companies who intend to enter the burgeoning Hispanic market, especially when they represent a source of employment for Hispanics, for those who have great editorial talent and for those with specialized drive in advertising or graphic design," expressed Lupita Colmenero, President of the NAHP.
The admission of these publications is contingent upon certain conditions, such as having a majority of Hispanic employees and a Hispanic editor. The publication also must be audited. Those publications that do not meet these requirements can become "Associate" members stated Ms. Colmenero.
The unanimous decision was taken in Dallas, TX during an NAHP Board of Directors meeting.