New York Community Media Alliance was founded in March 2007 to help strengthen the immigrant and community press in New York City, recognizing the critical role it plays in helping to organize, advocate for, and encourage civic engagement in the communities it serves. This media sector, comprised of close to 350 weeklies and 26 foreign-language dailies, reaches a readership of well over 3.5 million, of which 1.8 million have little or no English-language skills, according to the Mayor's Office on Immigrant Affairs. Well over a third of these publications are distributed nationally, thereby extending the impact of its reporting beyond the confines of their neighborhood, city and state.
In pursuit of its mission to promote social justice through media reform, NYCMA developed a cluster of programs to help strengthen the editorial and business quality of the publications, advocate for access to information for immigrant and community journalists, and foster coalition building within the sector, as a means to demand transparency and accountability from local, state and federal government. A robust, well-informed, sustainable ethnic and community media is increasingly important in an media environment that fails to acknowledge and perceive with nuance the needs and concerns of the emerging ethnically diverse communities and communities of color that in New York City represent 60 percent of its residents.