31 Jan Cuts, layoffs, and changes in Western Washington journalism
The media landscape is shifting momentously. In the last month in Western Washington our industry has lost nearly 100 jobs, most of them in newsrooms. The result is a weakening of the public dialogue and a particular loss to the communities served by these news institutions.
The following outlets have implemented layoffs or closures since the beginning of the year:
- Breaking News, which was based in Seattle, announced it was closing its doors on December 31, and 20 staffers lost their jobs
- KOMO cut 10 positions, including two investigative reporters on January 4
- Northwest Cable News closed in the first week of January and 20 employees lost their jobs
- The Seattle Times announced plans on January 6 to cut two dozen jobs
- The Seattle Globalist announced that they were struggling to stay afloat after losing incubation
- The Issaquah Press — a 117-year-old journalism institution — and their partners Sammamish Review, Newcastle News, and SnoValley Star, will all close on February 24 costing at least a dozen jobs
SPJ Western Washington is dedicated to supporting the journalists and communities affected by these losses. The board will continue to offer training to the community through workshops, as well as monetary support through the Passion Projects grant, which gives grants to photographers who want to do a self-initiated visual project.
In addition to that, we are now committed to matching any journalist affected by these layoffs with a mentor who can help with resumes, pitches, and cover letters in the search for a new journalism job. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get matched.
The board needs to hear what else you need. Tell us how we can support you during this tough time. We are considering things like:
- The establishment of a mid-career grant that would assist a freelance journalist or news organization with reporting and publishing a project that would benefit and inform the community
- Support for attending journalism learning opportunities outside of our area
- A mentor meet-up that would support any journalist in our area
We support you and other journalists who are struggling through layoffs during this tough time.
SPJ Western Washington