At the 2014 IRE Conference, a panel of three journalists, moderated by New England Center for Investigative Reporting senior investigative reporter Jenifer McKim, talked about finding how they found forgotten victims and tackled overlooked issues. Senior citizens in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, Detroit citizens unfairly affected by the city’s recent bankruptcy, black lung-afflicted coal miners unable to receive their medical benefits, and abused children whose voices go continually unheard were all discussed at length by the panel.
While uncovering information about unexpected victims of Detroit’s recent bankruptcy, Azmat Khan, reporter and senior digital producer at America Tonight, Al Jazeera America’s flagship show, had to seriously consider which of the many victims she would use as her main characters in the report. She gave guidance about how to choose the most representative stories and how to best utilize them across many platforms.
A.C. Thompson, a staff reporter with ProPublica, shared his experiences dealing with elder abuse in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. In nursing homes, which are more equipped to tackle the medical needs of the elderly, getting information about the treatment of the residents is much easier.
Thompson also talked about how different assisted living facilities are from nursing homes. He explains how much harder it is to find reports and documentation when investigating assisted living facilities. However, Thompson gives some great tips on who you can talk to in your state in order to find out information that’s not being kept as data.