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SPJ joins Fourth Estate partners in nationwide campaign to show gratitude to journalists during COVID-19


Patricia Gallagher Newberry, SPJ National President, 513-702-4065,
Jennifer Royer, SPJ Director of Communications and Marketing, 317-361-4134,

INDIANAPOLIS --Today, the Society of Professional Journalists, along with the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and a core coalition of over 40 media and nonprofit partners, announced the launch of a joint national campaign to recognize the #PRESSentials workers, and #ThankAJourno for their efforts on the frontlines of COVID-19. The coalition asked the public to post on their social media accounts on April 9 and include messages of support and gratitude to journalists and newsrooms.

With the onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world is hardly the place it ever was before. Emerging just at the end of 2019, the virus has spread throughout the world, disrupting billions of lives and creating unprecedented crises in first-world and third-world nations alike. As ever, people are adapting and learning to operate on a new norm to combat the pandemic. Journalists are no exception.

Information of COVID-19 is changing at an alarming rate, and like many other essential workers, journalists are risking their health and working long hours to keep covering stories that help to show the data, inform communities and ask the hard questions of government officials.

"I have been beyond amazed at the amount, the variety and the quality of COVID-19 reporting from across the globe," said SPJ National President Patricia Gallagher Newberry. "Journalists are bringing their audiences stories of grief and hope; of how to stay safe and how to help their neighbors; of how to learn and teach and work in new ways — even as they figure out, as they go, how to do the same."

According to a new Pew Research Center Election News Pathways survey conducted from March 10-16, 2020, “The COVID-19 pandemic has caught Americans’ rapt attention. Roughly half of U.S. adults (51%) are following news about it very closely, with another 38% following it fairly closely.”

More and more, the public is depending on the press for accurate information on what is happening locally, nationally and globally.

“In a time when misinformation means life or death, we are relying even more on our journalists to provide accurate and accessible information,” said NAHJ Executive Director, Alberto B. Mendoza. “Our journalists deserve recognition for providing the public with the insight they need, to do their part in combating this pandemic and remaining healthy.”

As essential workers during this time, journalists have a difficult role of creating impact, as they too are being impacted. With this campaign, Americans everywhere can seize the opportunity to #ThankAJourno and express their appreciation for #PRESSential workers’ services to the world. A commitment fulfilled, despite the unavoidable hardships in a global pandemic.

Comprised of a coalition who represent every essential area of the fourth Estate, the #PRESSential campaign will serve to inform the public of the critical work done daily by journalists, unite the world in a spirit of gratitude for the press, and celebrate individuals and newsrooms for their diligence in serving their communities.

In addition to SPJ and NAHJ, the core coalition includes the Asian American Journalists Association, ACES: The Society for Editing, American Journalism Project, CBS News, Center for Community Media at Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY, Center for Public Integrity, Craig Newmark Foundation,, CTNewsJunkie, Democracy Fund, Education Writers Association, Facebook Journalism Project, The Fund for Investigative Journalism, Freedom of the Press Foundation, Fundamedios, Futuro Media Group, Google News, International Center for Journalists, Institute for Nonprofit News, Investigative Reporters and Editors, International Women’s Media Foundation, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Journalism and Women Symposium, Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, JSK Stanford, Latino Rebels, Lenfest Institute, Local Independent Online News, Los Angeles Times, Maynard Institute, McCormick Foundation, Media Transformation Challenge at Poynter, Michigan Radio NPR, National Association of Black Journalists, Native American Journalists Association, News Leaders Association, NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists, Online News Association, palabra., Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, Report for America, Radio Television Digital News Association, The Freedom Forum, Univision, UT Knight Center, and The Washington Post.

SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press. Support excellent journalism and fight for your right to know. Become a member, give to the Legal Defense Fund or give to the SPJ Foundation.


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