Twenty persons held an hour-long demonstration in front of the offices of WJLA-TV on Connecticut Avenue yesterday to protest the station's failure to renew contract of television newspaper Delores Handy.
The demonstration ended when police ordered the marchers to disperse because they did not have a permit to demonstrate.
Calvin Rolark, a politically active newspaper publisher, led the marchers as they carried signs and marched in a circle in front of the station at 4461 Connecticut Ave. NW.
"Something must be wrong with that station (WJLA-TV) when no black can qualify to have their contract renewed," Rolark said. "I've seen them (anchorpersons) come and go at that station . . . Baker Morton, Les Parker, Fred Thomas, Paul Berry and now Delores Handy." Berry is still employed by the station as a reporter.
Handy's dismissal last month prompted a City Council resolution last week decrying the station's decision not to rehire her. The resolution was sponsored by Wilhelmina Rolark, wife of the publisher who organized and headed yesterday's protest.
At yesterday's march Rolark cited a story by Handy reporting inproved police-community relations in South-east Washington as an example the work that has made Handy "popular with people, a people's reporter."
The television station has explained that Handy was fired because she did not get along with other employes at the station.
Rolark said he believes the real reason for Handy's dismissal is that "at no time could any black person get along," at WJLA-TV.