Challenging stigma: we need more journalism like this (21/10/16)

We've submitted the following letter to The Age, commending the paper (and journalist Chloe Booker) for publishing this response to the recent stigmatising and inflammatory coverage of welfare payments and methamphetamine use in the Herald Sun. See our response to that article.

Challenging stigma: we need more journalism like this

UnitingCare ReGen commends Chloe Booker and The Age for today’s excellent response to recent stigmatising and inflammatory media coverage of people who use methamphetamine (‘They’re not “cold hard bludgers”: Ice users on welfare need support not shame’). We need more journalism like this if we are to move beyond the lazy stereotypes and improve public understanding of the complex array of factors that contribute to (and result from) alcohol and other drug use within our communities. We need journalists to look beyond the usual hyperbole and simplistic political rhetoric if we are to recognise the individual, social and systemic factors driving drug related harm and develop evidence based (as opposed to populist) policy responses. We hope more journalists follow Chloe’s example.

Laurence Alvis