When the Long Beach Media Collaborative officially convened in 2017, the four publications involved — the Press-Telegram, the Long Beach Post website, the Grunion Gazette and the Long Beach Business Journal — sought to address the divide between those with internet access and those without.
That commitment to collaborative local journalism resulted in the award-winning series, Strengthening the Signal.
In the next phase of its partnership, the collaborative will tackle another divide: the disparities that have created a housing crisis in Long Beach.
In “The Housing Divide: Making it in Long Beach,” a series of more than a dozen stories set to be published this month, reporters from the four Long Beach publications will address various aspects of the city’s housing issues, from the reasons behind the escalating rent and homeownership pricing market trends to first-hand accounts of those displaced from their Long Beach neighborhoods.
While the housing crisis is not unique to Long Beach, this series will focus on the impacts it is having on the city and its residents. While homelessness is one symptom of escalating housing costs, the crisis of low supply has broader-reaching effects, impacting the working poor, students, minorities, women, and middle-class residents.
Much like Strengthening the Signal, “The Housing Divide: Making it in Long Beach” seeks to find possible solutions and invites readers to engage in the discussion.
“The most important impact journalism can make on a community is educating residents and seeking positive solutions to issues,” said Marcelle Epley, president and CEO of the Long Beach Community Foundation, which initiated the Long Beach Media Collaborative concept and secured funding from the Knight Foundation to make it a reality.
“Our local media organizations, all uniquely talented within their individual organizations, are stronger together and well-positioned in this second series to explore solutions to a variety of housing-related challenges in the community,” Epley said.