CIA DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION CAMPAIGN CAUSES CONTROVERSY
The Central Intelligence Agency’s latest recruitment video has made global headlines today after politicians criticised its direct use of language in an effort to promote inclusion and diversity.
The video campaign went viral after being shared on the organisation’s YouTube and social media pages last week.
The two-minute video, features a 36-year old Latina agent as she proudly discusses her identity as ‘intersectional’, ‘cisgender millennial’ and ‘a mom with generalised anxiety disorder’.
The campaign aims to increase diversity and recruit women and ethnic minorities. The agent states ‘I am intersectional, but my existence is not a box-checking exercise,’ as she is filmed in action as a CIA employee.
The campaign has been heavily criticised for its heavy use of progressive language and attempt to ensure political correctness.
Having first been posted to twitter last Wednesday 28 April, the platform opened the space for widespread external commentary and criticism.
The backlash escalated after Donald Trump Jr, son of the former President, criticised the CIA's comms strategy.
The campaign has since been heavily politicised with the South China Morning Post sharing the headline ‘China and Russian are laughing’: CIA video angers US conservatives’, while French news channel, France24, posted an article titled ‘Woke’ CIA recruitment video infuriates US conservatives.’
Commenting on the campaign criticism, Larry Pfeiffer, former chief of staff for the CIA, says “I would suggest that if you don’t like it, you are probably not whom the ad is targeting for employment. Strength from diversity.”
Public responses to the video have been mixed, but this recruitment campaign demonstrates the importance of strategic language when discussing inclusion and diversity, in order to maintain authenticity and connect with target audiences. Watch and read more about the campaign video here.