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The Tyee Is a Finalist for Canada’s Excellence in Journalism Award

We are shortlisted in the small media category, and part of a project nominated for the group of large media, too.

Tyee Staff 4 Apr

The Tyee is a finalist for a prestigious national award “honouring news organizations that embody exemplary journalism and have a profound positive impact on the communities they serve.”

The CJF Jackman Awards for Excellence in Journalism are given by the Canadian Journalism Foundation to media organizations in two categories, large and small.

The Tyee is one of five outlets on the short list for small media (fewer than 50 employees).

The recognition is for Andrew Nikiforuk’s multi-story investigation into the Alberta government's covert efforts to undo decades-old regulations to open up the Rockies' sensitive eastern slopes to open-pit coal mining.

“Andrew’s reporting, way ahead of anyone else and much more in-depth as the story unfolded, has been credited with providing the early alarm on the province’s intentions, and informing a grassroots movement that fought the threat to rural ecosystems and drinking water for towns and cities,” said Tyee editor David Beers.

“In response to that broad-based opposition the Kenney government declared a halt to its plans, though we and others are watching to see if that’s true,” said Beers.

The Tyee is also part of a consortium selected as a finalist in the large media category. The project "Clean Water, Broken Promises" arose from a collaborative investigation into water issues in First Nations involving student journalists, instructors, reporters and editors and producers across Canada.

In The Tyee, Francesca Fionda’s in-depth report exposed unsafe lead levels in 35 First Nations schools, and Annie Burns-Pieper documented how lack of government tracking of bad water on reserves prevents solutions.

The Tyee partnered with APTN News, Global News, Le Devoir, the Saskatoon StarPhoenix and Canada’s National Observer on the project, which was co-ordinated by the Institute for Investigative Journalism at Concordia University.

“We were grateful to be invited by project head Patti Sonntag to be part of this amazing effort,” said Beers. “It’s gratifying to see The Tyee’s investigative work earn recognition in both small and large categories for the Jackman Award.”

The four other finalists in the large media category are Global News, Le Devoir, the Globe and Mail and the Winnipeg Free Press.

Vying with The Tyee in the small media category are IndigiNews, Rocky Mountain Outlook, the Narwhal and the Saskatoon StarPhoenix.

The work cited by the Canadian Journalism Foundation for each finalist is available to read on the CJF awards page. Information about this year’s judges and other aspects of the CJF Jackman Award can be found in the CJF’s press release.

The winners in both categories will be announced at the CJF Awards ceremony on June 7 in Toronto.

The Tyee has twice won the CJF Jackman Award for Excellence in Journalism and has been a finalist several other times, most recently last year for reporting by Bryan Carney.

By its own description, the Canadian Journalism Foundation, founded in 1990, “promotes, celebrates and facilitates excellence in journalism.” In addition to bestowing a range of awards annually, the CJF conducts monthly J-Talks about issues and challenges for media in the digital era, and fosters journalism education, training and research.

The CJF website says the not-for-profit charity “receives arms-length financial support from media and non-media corporations and foundations and from its annual CJF Awards. The foundation receives no sustaining public funding but on occasion invites government to co-sponsor appropriate professional development events. Government-sponsored topics have included justice, health and Indigenous issues.”  [Tyee]

Read more: Rights + Justice, Media

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