PNA shares Pennsylvania newspapers’ statewide coverage of the opioid crisis

  • Sep 19, 2016

Cara Neil, Communications Director

HARRISBURG, Pa., September 19, 2016 –The Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association (PNA), in cooperation with its members, has produced a compilation of heroin and opioid abuse news coverage from around the state. The book includes more than 430 pages of coverage from news media organizations across the Commonwealth.

As explained in a letter from PNA Chairman Ralph Martin and PNA President Teri Henning, “[t]he issue of opioid addiction, heroin use and overdose fatalities has affected all regions of Pennsylvania and the country. In an effort to help readers understand and respond, PNA members have covered the issues extensively, holding town hall forums, developing stories and in-depth series, and more.” 

In addition to the ongoing statewide coverage, the Daily Item (Sunbury) received one of two national grants by the 2016 Associated Press Media Editors’ Community Journalism Public Service Initiative for its continuing coverage of the heroin and prescription drug abuse crisis. Other PNA members have hosted town hall forums, shared contact information for opioid abuse hotlines and resources, and shared personal stories, in an effort to inform their communities about this epidemic.

“Pennsylvania’s news media has been working hard to educate our public on this devastating epidemic and the dangerous consequences of addiction and the misuse of opioids,” Chairman Kerry Benninghoff said. “The press plays an important and irreplaceable role in educating our communities and bringing an end to this terrible crisis. Without education, we will never reduce the demand for addictive substances. I thank them for partnering with the state Legislature to bring critically needed information to light.” 

As Pennsylvania’s legislature and the administration continue discussions on opioid addiction, PNA is pleased to share the extensive work that Pennsylvania’s newspapers have done to shed light on this crisis. More coverage, including the book, is available on the PNA website at http://panewsmedia.org/legal/pna-members-opioid-coverage.  

About PNA: The PNA, founded in 1925, is the nonprofit trade association for print and digital news media in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Its mission is to advance the business interests of Pennsylvania news media organizations and to promote a free and independent press. It has more than 300 newspaper, digital news, and media-related members, including daily, weekly, and college newspapers and online publications.

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