On Dec. 9, The Diamondback published the story “UMD SGA allots $97K to convert Frat Row house into space for MGC and NPHC members.” In its initial publication, the story misstated that Madhulika Nallani was elected as new speaker for the SGA when in fact Meghana Kotraiah was elected as the SGA’s new speaker.
We recognize how harmful this misidentification was to people of color. We apologize for this offensive, unacceptable error and the hurt we’ve inflicted.
The expectation is to get our reporting right the first time — this story failed to do so. It did not meet basic journalistic standards and invalidated the accomplishments of two women of South Asian descent. The Diamondback has terminated the employment of the reporter involved after consideration of additional factors, which will remain private. Ryan White no longer represents The Diamondback. We plan to implement implicit bias training to prevent further errors like this.
Our editors must also do better. Before publication, five editors, including the editor in chief, edited the story. We decided to trust the reporter rather than independently confirm the names and positions of these two women — a mistake that was preventable.
This, and other recent errors, have rightfully caused some in our community to lose trust in this publication and its staff.
We also recognize how this has caused many of our own staff to reconsider their place within our newspaper. To them, we apologize for continuing a standard that has harmed and alienated students of color for years. We appreciate all of the time and hard work you have already given to us, and we will work hard to ensure we are deserving of it in the future.
We need to do better. We will continue to hold ourselves accountable.
This statement has been updated.