What’s happening in newsrooms today can be traumatic. Layoffs, cutbacks and fear are a daily reality. Reporters, photographers and news managers worry that bottom-line pressures are affecting the quality of their work. Many could use some help to deal with what they’re going through, but they may not be willing to admit it.
Journalists like to think of themselves as tough and self-sufficient, after all. They believe they can cover any story, no matter how grim, and remain unaffected. But that’s a myth.
For years, the Dart Center for Journalism & Trauma has helped journalists cope with what they’ve witnessed or experienced. Now, the Center’s Dart Society is helping journalists deal with the impact of the recession.
Reporter Dan Grech of Marketplace on NPR helped get the program started. Tentatively entitled “Project Invictus,” Latin for “unconquered,” the program brings journalists together for a candid, off-the-record conversation about the state of the industry and their place in it:
The first meeting, which I attended over the weekend in suburban Washington, DC, drew a diverse group of about 20 journalists–print and broadcast. Some had just lost their jobs; others are still employed but anxious about the future. My sense is that they all drew strength from each other and their shared commitment to good journalism.
There’s no public schedule for future meetings, which will be by invitation only. But if you’d like more information, contact Deirdre Stoelzle Graves, administrator of the Dart Society.