Resources for Tip Sheets
These tips are offered as suggestions only, to assist in fostering healthier newsrooms and better journalism. They are based on research findings on well-being and resilience and the practical experience of news professionals in the field.
Coverage of trauma and extreme human distress is a core part of journalism. These tips are for managers and editors to help them prepare and support the reporters who do this difficult and important work.
Most journalists face an inevitability in their careers: They must cover a tragedy and interview people who are pinned against a wall of grief. The wall blocks the victims from seeing that their lives may improve tomorrow. They only see who's in front of them and feel the pain of that moment.
Young journalists will often encounter violence among their first reporting experiences. The effects of catastrophe and cruelty are newsworthy, particularly when victims are numerous, are famous or are symbolic of something that we all relate to and hold dear: a child killed in a schoolroom; a nurse held hostage in a hospital.
Whether clinicians like it or not, children and families affected by trauma are routinely covered by the media. When that happens, clinicians often face difficult choices.
Note: Available as PDF download only.