The Council of Korean Americans (CKA) announced on Friday that it has asked its constituents to place phone calls to CBS Television Studios president David Stapf and head of drama development Bryan Seabury to voice complaints over contract negotiations that led the two actors to leave the cop procedural.
“This issue goes beyond compensation,” the statement read. “It highlights the ongoing problem of lack of diversity in Hollywood and that people of color, especially Asians, are considered peripheral, second-class and disposable.”
CBS said in a statement on Wednesday that it offered “large and significant salary increases” to Kim and Park in an attempt to retain the two cast members, who have played Chin Ho Kelly and Kono Kalakaua respectively since its launch in September 2010.
Executive producer Peter Lenkov posted a similar message to social media on Thursday, saying that the departures are “heartbreaking” but that Kim and Park turned down “unprecedented raises.”
Kim wrote on Facebook on Tuesday that he and the network “weren’t able to agree to terms on a new contract, so I made the difficult choice not to continue … The path to equality is rarely easy.”