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Report for America and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative join the New York Amsterdam News in addressing gun violence in Black and brown communities through journalistic solutions

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Press release content from PR Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.
December 22, 2022 GMT

NEW YORK, Dec. 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- The New York Amsterdam News (AmNews), one of America’s most influential and oldest continuously published Black newspapers, serving the nation’s largest Black and brown community, is proud to announce that two of some of the most influential funders in philanthropic journalism are investing in AmNews’ visionary initiative “Beyond the Barrel of the Gun.”

Report for America (RFA), a national service program that places emerging journalists into local newsrooms across the country to report on under-covered issues, will be placing a third Report for America corps member in AmNews’ newsroom who will focus exclusively on “Beyond the Barrel of the Gun” This newly launched three-year AmNews initiative, and its rapidly growing network of media partners and legacy Black newspapers nationwide, is focused on journalism-driven solutions to gun violence in Black and brown communities in New York City and nationwide. This new RFA reporter will join the AmNews’ two current corps members who cover politics and public safety respectively for the Harlem based newspaper now celebrating its 113th anniversary.


“We are excited to deepen our productive partnership with the Amsterdam News. This third corps member will help the paper continue its century-plus tradition of serving Black and brown communities in New York and around the country,” said Report for America co-founder Steve Waldman.

“Our continued partnership with Report for America will help us tell the real story of gun violence in our communities: a preventable public health crisis that our leaders continue to turn a blind eye to,” said New York Amsterdam News Publisher Elinor Tatum.

The Amsterdam News is also honored to announce that it will hire its first science reporter through a generous two-year grant from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), which also provided inaugural funding for the Blacklight unit, the first such investigative unit in a legacy Black newspaper.

“We are excited to continue our support for the Amsterdam News and their mission to inform and uplift the communities they serve,” said CZI spokesperson Patricia Flores.

The AmNews’ new science reporter will support our continuing coverage of COVID-19 and climate change’s impact on Black and brown communities and assist in our coverage of gun violence as a public health crisis.


These Report for America and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative funded reporters will be focused on Beyond the Barrel of the Gun’s work—from exploring the root causes of gun violence to documenting the multi-generational impact of this plague on Black and brown communities to highlighting the solutions to a problem falsely portrayed as intractable. For more than a decade the New York Amsterdam News has called gun violence in our communities by its rightful name: a public health crisis now illustrated by an innovative gun violence map of NYC the AmNews recently launched on the newspaper’s homepage:


“The investment of both RFA and CZI, among our nation’s most influential philanthropic investors in journalism, is just the latest in a series of such investment that will help us better serve our growing Black and brown audience nationwide,” said AmNews Chief Revenue Officer Siobhan Bennett.

Beyond the Barrel of the Gun is the most recent example of the New York Amsterdam News’ ongoing revival that includes its powerfully reimagined website; its acclaimed weekday newsletter Editorially Black; a dramatically expanded Internship program aimed at growing the future diversity of America’s newsrooms; its Publisher’s seminal role in the creation of Word in Black, a landmark union of ten legacy Black newspapers nationwide focused together on combating racial inequity; and, the launch of The Blacklight the newspaper’s new investigative unit.

The AmNews also received support this year from Columbia University’s Lipman Center for Journalism and Civil and Human Rights as well as from the Solutions Journalism Network for in-depth reporting projects to be published in 2023.


Since its launch in August of 2022, Beyond the Barrel of the Gun has received unprecedented support from other Black newspaper’s nationwide, including Baltimore’s acclaimed AFRO-American newspaper; the over 900 news outlets and 3,000 members of the Local Media Association and its visionary CEO Nancy Lane; The Trace, the nation’s leading gun violence media publication; Union leaders such as George Gresham of 1199SEIU, the nation’s largest health care union with one of the largest Black and brown union member rosters in the nation; non-profits like Common Justice, focused on violence solutions that don’t rely on incarceration; and, legislative leaders like renowned former Congressman Charles B Rangel.

To support our continued journalistic work, the Amsterdam News is seeking to raise significant additional funds as part of its 2022 Annual Giving Campaign to both help support its Report for America corps members and the ongoing work of Beyond the Barrel of the Gun. Those interested in supporting our work can visit to make a tax-deductible donation.


“Last year we reached out to our readers and subscribers asking for their financial support as part of AmNews’ first ever Giving Tuesday and End of Year Giving campaigns. The response was overwhelmingly positive—helping to ensure AmNews can continue in another 113 years of racial equity journalism. We hope those same readers and subscribers will give again in this year so we can continue in AmNews’ historic work,” said Publisher Tatum.

Founded in 1909, the New York Amsterdam News has for more than a century served as a vital voice for New York’s, and America’s, Black and brown communities.

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SOURCE New York Amsterdam News