It's horrible that the MotherCorp would cut the only reporter position in a region as ginormous as yours. We are all worse off for this.
There are two ways to look at my layoff.
No. Make that three.
Yes. There are at least three ways to look at the way I lost my job. Wait. Maybe there are more. Hm.
I'm getting confused. Why don't we just look at the "facts:"
- Poor Jackie: she doesn't have a job anymore. And now has to leave the place she's called home for the past two years. Moving is hard. Moving from the north is harder. Leaving people and places behind you may never see again is difficult. Leaving without a job on the other end is even harder. Poor Jackie.
- Poor Rankin: there are a handful of reporter positions for the territory. One in Rankin Inlet. One in Cambridge Bay. About 5 or 6 in Iqaluit (giving half-points to the news reader and senior reporter etc.) The position in Rankin will soon be gone, leaving a huge gap in news coverage for the territory.
- Poor Regions: while there is *supposed* to be a reporter position in Cambridge Bay, this isn't the case, really. The reporter assigned to the Kitikmeot is actually currently based in Iqaluit. The plan *was* to move him to Cambridge Bay, but there are some logistical issues that have been tricky to work out. That means there are only reporters in the Baffin region now. All reporting outside Iqaluit will now have to be done by phone.
- Locals doing local news: For the past couple months (and especially since I left for vacation) my coworkers here in Rankin Inlet have been doing more and more news clips. Instead of me taking clips from the interviews they've done and writing them into a story, they're doing it themselves. This means more chances for bilingual stories. And more stories grounded in the culture of the regions. This is a good thing.
- Jackie gets what she wanted: to head out of Rankin sooner rather than later. And she doesn't have to pay her own way to do it.
Having the local people here in Rankin do that job is probably the direction we should have gone in in the first place. Have them trained to do the reporting, or at least job-shadowing the reporter for a couple months so they know how things go.
The PROBLEM here isn't in eliminating a job (because in reality, though not in name, they are going to have others fill that void). The problem is that yet again we're going to have people in the Rankin station thrown into doing a job they've not been really trained to do. Sure, more often than not, you learn by doing. But there's journalistic theory involved in reporting. Guidelines and rules that need to be followed... and until you get someone up here to hold a session on Journalistic ethics and practices... the station's going to be at a bit of a loss.