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NABJ backs TCR independence

October 6, 2020       To The Chicago Renewal Society:

The National Association of Black Journalists Chicago Chapter is disheartened by recent publicity exposing challenges at The Chicago Reporter, the venerable publication founded in 1972 by John A. McDermott — to measure Chicago’s progress toward racial equality as the civil rights era ended.

Its readers among NABJ-Chicago and the general public are left in the dark by the sudden halt in operations at the investigative news organization, which has provided vital reporting on issues of race, poverty and inequality for 48 years. Subscribers learned only through the media that the publication was recently put on “hiatus” by the 136-year-old, faith-based Community Renewal Society.

Not only are your readers in the dark as to why publication was halted without explanation to the public, but we are left further disheartened by the obscurity surrounding the Sept. 17 firing of The Chicago Reporter’s Editor/Publisher Fernando Diaz.   NABJ-Chicago joins The Chicago Reporter readers and the myriad Journalism organizations urging the Community Renewal Society to engage in transparency, particularly as there have been questions surrounding the publication’s very necessary “independent editorial control.”   NABJ-Chicago urges the Chicago Renewal Society to broach conversations with the illustrious alumni who reached out, unsuccessfully, for discourse on the status and future of this critical publication, including Laura Washington, Alden Loury and John A. McDermott Jr., and NABJ-Chicago stands ready to support in any ways in which we are able.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me, at maudlyne@nabjchicago.org. Find more on NABJCC at http://www.nabjchicago.org  

Sincerely,  
Maudlyne Ihejirika President  
P.O. Box 81228, Chicago, IL 60681-0228 www.nabjchicago.org  

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