Equitable Reporting Guide & Reporting on Homelessness
Introducing the Guide to Equitable Reporting
In this guide, I cover information about the community, equitable approaches to reporting, acknowledging bias and frequent DEI terms. Without further ado, I present to you Annenberg Media’s Guide to Equitable Reporting Strategies and Newsroom Style:
If you’d like even more information, you can read the introductory article to the guide written by Pauline here:
Reporting on Homemelessnes
This week, L.A. City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell announced that L.A. will start the process of closing Echo Park, ordering unhoused people living there to leave. Protests against this process began last night and this story will definitely be developing in the future. As we report on the unhoused community, I wanted to share some tips to keep in mind:
- Do not stereotype the community. Homelessness looks very different from person to person and may be caused by larger systemic issues. Be sure to do the research and get the broader social and economic perspective that’ll help contextualize the story.
- Do not blame the individual for the situation they are in.
- When using photos, be careful to not use anything that can identify people (unless given consent).
- Try to use “people experiencing homelessness” over “homeless people” when possible. This humanizes homelessness and puts the person first.
- “Houseless” is also a term that can be used in lieu of “homeless” and is more intentional and specific. The reasoning behind this transition to the usage of “houselessness” is to acknowledge that people can still have a home without a house.
- Especially for those living in Echo Park, that area is their home. This is why O’Farrell’s orders are a big issue. With Annenberg Media, we have not pushed for the use of “houselessness,” but it is encouraged and can be used under the reporter’s preference.
As always, reach out to Equity Board members if you need specific guidance.