From the editor: A pledge to do better for our Latino community members
What’s a community without vital information or context? That’s a question that all too many towns and cities around the United States have faced after losing their local newspaper. While we at the Glenwood Springs Post Independent and Rifle Citizen Telegram have been fortunate enough to weather the pandemic without layoffs or staff reductions, we did reduce our overall number of print days in 2020.
But that didn’t change our mission of being a vital resource for the community — in fact, it had the opposite effect and prompted a lot of internal discussion about how we can improve upon what we already provide.
Very early on in those discussions, a shortcoming of ours became clear: we need to do better in reaching and including the roughly one-third of our county identifying as Latino. For too long, our coverage has not included these vital voices to the level and care that they deserve. These conversations led in part to hiring reporter Jessica Peterson into the Post Independent newsroom. Her Spanish-language skills and drive to connect with Latino sources are already proving an invaluable resource for our newsroom and community.
Starting out with our Spanish-language content, we plan to offer 3-5 stories weekly in Spanish, which will run in our Monday editions. This content will also be available in English, and we’ll include notes about where those English-language versions will be found. If our Spanish language content receives positive engagement and is valued by our readers, we’ll continue to seek opportunities to expand and grow that content.
Our goal is to provide more than just Spanish-language content, however. All of us within the Post Independent newsroom want to do better at sharing and telling the stories of everyone in our community. We want to build up our connections with our Latino community members and will strive to seek out their voices for stories and context. We haven’t done this as well as we should, but we are deeply invested in seeking to improve upon this from here on out. Success won’t happen overnight, but we understand just how important this is for our Latino community members. To those members of our community, we seek a partnership in helping make sure we include your voices. Have a story idea? Dealing with a challenge that you think needs more public light? Give us a call at the Post Independent and we will work with you to help amplify and share your perspectives and stories.
Peter Baumann is editor of the Glenwood Springs Post Independent and Rifle Citizen Telegram.
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