Since May 2022, SJN has been working with ten U.S. newsrooms in our ongoing Labor Cohort to examine systemic labor issues and responses based on what’s already happening on the ground. Our goal is that these newsrooms will produce solutions journalism that spurs the industry into stronger, healthier narratives about workers.
These journalists are tackling the intersections between labor and related topics like climate change, immigration, transportation and education. In rural and urban settings, in start-ups and well-established publications, they are pursuing answers to questions about which policies, programs and initiatives are providing the resources and creating the right set of circumstances for families to move up the economic ladder - and they are doing it without resorting to dehumanizing or objectifying narratives about poverty.
Core in this approach is community engagement strategies that help reporters identify community-driven solutions. With coaching from Hearken and Resolve Philly’s consulting arm, Modifier, the Labor Cohort newsrooms have hosted community events featuring sources from their stories, community representatives to interview specific communities underserved by existing news services, and implemented tools to survey their community and connect digitally.
To learn more, reach out to Angela K. Evans.
- Check out the newest labor cohort stories published by news outlets on the forefront of this change.
- Add a regular dose of solutions journalism to your media diet by signing up for Custom Story Alerts. You can create story alerts to notify you when stories are added to the Solutions Story Tracker® that match your interests. To add or update your story alerts, log in to the Solutions Journalism Network website. Custom Story Alerts are located within your Profile, which you can access by clicking on your initial, then navigating to the Solutions In Your Inbox tab. Once you are logged into our website, click here for a quick portal to create and edit your alerts.
Resources by Labor Cohort Fellows
- Guide to becoming a listening newsroom from Gary Enrique Bradley-Lopez, Community Engagement Bureau manager at the Kansas City Beacon.
- Tips for broadcast journalists looking to produce solutions journalism from Click Orlando investigative reporter Erik Sandoval.
- Webinar on bringing a solutions-oriented and pro-worker approach to internal newsroom practices from Prism Editor in Chief Ashton Lattimore (slide deck).
- SF State Solutions in the Newsroom panel with Angela K. Evans from SJN, Alexis Terrazas from El Tecolote, JR Valrey and Kevin Epps from SF Bay View News, and Professor Ana Lourdes Cardenas from the bilingual journalism department at SF State, organized by Lorena Garibay from El Tecolote.
- Find new ways to think about diversity in reporting with Queeralize, an online toolkit intended to create more diverse sourcing and visibility of LGBTQ+ people in local news stories and increase tools for LGBTQ+ reporters to create impactful solutions journalism from Chris Rudisill, editor of QNotes.
- Read about how to teach solutions journalism to high school students from Gambit editor John Stanton.
- Learn how to be prepared and report from a solutions lens in the middle of a natural disaster, especially when it happens where you live, from WMMT’s Katie Myers and informed by her experience after devastating Kentucky floods in 2022.
- Arizona Luminaria reporter Beatriz Limon encourages other Spanish-language journalists to employ solutions journalism in service of Latino communities in the U.S. and Mexico in this column published in El Imparcial. She also shares her insight at Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, captured in this recording.
Webinars and Guides
- Looking to cover labor and worker issues from a solutions lens? Check out our "What’s working for U.S. workers" reporting guide.
- Explore the Economic Mobility Guide and Engagement Toolkit for recommendations on how to integrate this kind of reporting into your coverage.
- Need a quick way to get started? Check out the webinars below!
- Solutions Journalism Network and Hearken have a webinar on generating trust, insight, and relationships with solutions journalism and community engagement. Check out the slide deck, the guide, and a tip sheet about how to introduce engagement efforts in your newsroom.
- Resolve Philly’s consulting arm, Modifier, has a webinar on building community relationships to further your solutions journalism. Hear strategies to increase participation in the journalism process and how this approach can surface solutions already happening on the ground and allow you to achieve more trustworthy, accurate, and impactful storytelling and reporting. The Kansas City Beacon offers a case study of how their community engagement bureau works with reporters to source solutions story ideas. Check out Modifier's slide deck, "What's Your Process?" tip sheet, and Sound OFF event planning guide, as well as the slide deck and guide to becoming a listening newsroom from the Kansas City Beacon.
- Partnering with Make With, Prism and Next City, Solutions Journalism Network hosted a webinar titled "Economy + Democracy: Sourcing Solutions Stories about Community Ownership, Wealth, and Labor," which explores innovative and evidence-based community-led models for ownership, governance, and finance often go ignored or unnoticed by editorial agendas. Check out the slide deck and handout with story and source ideas.