Why the Granite State News Collaborative is launching a multi-year project on race and equity

‘It’s past time to tell this story in a way that’s never been told in New Hampshire’

Gsnc LogoDiversity has always been a part of New Hampshire. Today, our state’s diversity is deepening, and it’s becoming even more vital to the health of our state’s economy, our institutions and our cities and towns. Simply, our state’s success will rely in many ways on the decisions we make today regarding communities of color, equity and injustice.

While we are not as diverse as other states, we are rapidly becoming more so. Referring to our state as “lily-white” New Hampshire discounts the contributions communities of color have made and continue to make to New Hampshire. Inequity isn’t a problem for some other state to deal with. It exists here too and it’s ours to solve.

It’s past time to tell this story in a way that’s never been told in New Hampshire.

The partners of the Granite State News Collaborative have launched of a multi-year project examining race and equity in New Hampshire.

For those unfamiliar, the collaborative is a collective of nearly 20 local media, education and community partners working together to produce and share news stories on the issues that most impact our state. The hope is that together we can provide more information to more communities across New Hampshire than we could individually.

The goals of the project include:

  • People: We will introduce the public to many of the people and communities contributing to our state. True to the tenets of journalism, we will gather their thoughts, work to understand their perspective and share their voices.
  • Policy: The national conversation on race has highlighted the systems and policies that have disproportionately impacted communities of color. We will investigate those in place in New Hampshire, their impacts on our communities and take a hard look at proposed solutions, asking the question: “Would this work here?” Our areas of focus will include policing/criminal justice, economic opportunity, affordable housing, health, education and access to civic engagement.
  • Data: You cannot adequately identify the challenges and possible solutions if you don’t have a full understanding of the issues. In many respects, there is a dearth of demographic data when it comes to people of color in New Hampshire. We will set out to gather the data that will help analyze where disparities exist, and we will rigorously report the impact of those disparities on our communities and the solutions that may address those areas of concern.
  • Outreach: At its best, journalism is a mirror that reflects the world around us. The truth is, the New Hampshire journalism community has never been as diverse as the communities it covers. That must change, and this reporting project will be among the many steps forward on diversity within our own workforce. In order to do this project justice we will work in partnership with our state’s communities of color in order to produce stories that accurately represent them and their experiences.

Independent journalism must play a vital role in moving our state forward on the issues of diversity, equity and injustice. We pledge to listen deeply, report rigorously and make solutions central to our mission.

This letter was signed by the partners of the Granite State News Collaborative: NH Business Review, The Berlin Daily Sun, Business NH Magazine, The Business Journal of Greater Keene, Brattleboro and Peterborough, The Concord Monitor, The Conway Daily Sun, The Keene Sentinel, The Laconia Daily Sun, Manchester Ink Link, The Marlin Fitzwater Center at Franklin Pierce University, The Nashua Telegraph, NH Bar News, New Hampshire Press Association, New Hampshire PBS, NH Public Radio, The Monadnock Ledger-Transcript, Seacoast Media Group and The Valley News.

Categories: News, Opinion