Indigenous-issues columnist, trio who revealed depth of meth crisis among Canada’s best


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The Winnipeg Free Press has secured two nominations for the prestigious 2018 National Newspaper Awards.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 18/03/2019 (1469 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Winnipeg Free Press has secured two nominations for the prestigious 2018 National Newspaper Awards.

Columnist Niigaan Sinclair was nominated in the best columns category.

Jessica Botelho-Urbanski, Melissa Martin and Katie May were nominated together for Ice Storm: Manitoba’s Meth Crisis, a seven-part series documenting how methamphetamine is ravaging Winnipeg and destroying lives.

Erin DeBooy of the Brandon Sun was nominated for her examination of the personal and human toll caused by methamphetamine use in her community.

Sinclair submitted three columns. One concerned Hollywood’s portrayal of Indigenous people and how it applied to Saskatchewan farmer Gerald Stanley being found not guilty in the fatal shooting of an Indigenous man, Colten Boushie.

A second column was of Sinclair’s thoughts as a parent of a daughter while he awaited the jury’s verdict into the death of Indigenous teenager Tina Fontaine. The third column dealt with Indigenous veterans, in particular, his Grandpa Henry.

Botelho-Urbanski, Martin and May are nominated in the project of the year category. The series showed how deep and far-reaching the meth crisis is in society.

“I am so proud that our groundbreaking efforts to have an Indigenous voice as a regular city columnist and to properly put the crystal-meth crisis into perspective have been recognized as among the best journalism in the land,” Free Press Editor Paul Samyn said Monday.

The Globe and Mail leads all newspapers with 20 nominations.

Other news organizations with multiple nominations include the Toronto Star and La Presse with six each, the Canadian Press with four, and the Saskatoon StarPhoenix and Waterloo Region Record with three each.

In addition to the Winnipeg Free Press, the St. Catharines Standard, Calgary Herald/Calgary Sun, Edmonton Journal/Edmonton Sun and Ottawa Citizen also have two finalists.

This is the 70th year for the awards program. The 2018 Journalist of the Year will be chosen from among this year’s winners and revealed at the gala after all category awards have been announced.

There are 63 finalists in 21 categories, selected from 951 entries for work published in 2018. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in Toronto on May 3.


Updated on Monday, March 18, 2019 4:11 PM CDT: Photo fixed.

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