Trauma expert Dr. Cait McMahon, OAM, will retire from her role as Dart Centre Asia Pacific Managing Director later this year, following a 30-year career helping media workers better understand the impact of trauma on themselves and on those they report on.
How Can Indigenous Reporters Care for Themselves While Covering Trauma — and How Can Their Newsrooms Help?
In the last months, the remains of over a thousand people, including at least hundreds of Indigenous children, have been discovered on the properties of former residential schools in British Columbia and Saskatchewan. These discoveries have brought to the fore — for now — a subject that has long remained at the margins of mainstream media coverage in the United States: the genocide of millions of Indigenous people by colonizers.
This style guide is designed as a quick, authoritative reference for reporters, editors and producers working on tight deadlines. It includes brief evidence-informed guidance on news choices, language usage and ethics in reporting on the impact of trauma on individuals, families and communities; recommendations for appropriate use of relevant psychological and scientific terminology; and special considerations when reporting on consequential trauma-laden issues such as racism and sexual violence.
Dr. Elana Newman, The Dart Center's Research Director, and Naseem S. Miller, Senior Health Editor for The Journalist’s Resource, assembled a list of resources for coping with trauma as part of the Investigative Reporters and Editors Conference in June 2021.
To aid journalists challenged by covering violence, crisis and tragedy, the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma is launching an innovative training program preparing psychologists to work effectively with news professionals.
Dart Centre Europe has released new guidelines on covering sexual violence in conflict zones, designed for deeper learning, quick reference and easy sharing with colleagues. The guidelines aim to encourage accurate and insightful reporting, while also reducing the risk of further harm to those brave enough to tell their stories. You can access the guidelines here.
From the Tigray War in Ethiopia to on-going asymmetric war in Colombia, sexual violence is a reality of conflict around the world. Reporting on conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) is fraught with ethical issues and the potential for psychological harm to both source and reporter. The Dart Centre is releasing a new resource to deepen journalists’ understanding of CRSV and to help them report on this complex issue ethically and effectively.
This project focuses on 29 Alaskan women and men of different races and socio-economic backgrounds seeking to inspire change in Alaska’s justice system, and to de-stigmatize being a survivor of sexual violence. The judges called “Unheard” “exceptional, original journalism” that “puts the voices of survivors at the forefront” and “reimagines how trauma-aware, culturally-sensitive, collaborative reporting can be done.” They applauded the project’s “emphasis on the heterogeneity of sexual violence and trauma” and called the reporting approach “sensitive by design.” Originally published by the Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica on June 1, 2020.
Judges called the coverage of the killing of George Floyd and its aftermath "outstanding" and applauded the team for “helping readers understand that trauma doesn’t end easily or soon, but when addressed properly, it can become a catalyst for major change.” They described the long-form narrative, “George Floyd’s Search for Salvation” as “gripping” and “powerful” “where a symbol and a martyr became a man,” and called it “the definitive George Floyd story.” Originally published by The Star Tribune between May and December, 2020.
This investigation and multimedia project examines the Trump administration’s 'Remain in Mexico’ policy and its impacts, including the profound mental health effects on people seeking asylum in the U.S. Judges described “Trapped in Mexico” as a "staggering reporting feat" that "balances insightful data with expansive visuals and hard-hitting reporting.” Judges commented on the “unique sensitivity” of the video stories, and applauded the “slow pace of the storytelling, which mirrors the slow pace of the subjects' asylum cases.” Originally published by Univision News Digital on November 19, 2020. En Español.