WASHINGTON (AP) — The Associated Press and theGrio have come together for a candid conversation about issues facing Black Americans ahead of the 2024 election and amid high levels of polarization, discussing topics ranging from targeted racial violence to barriers to voting.
The panel discussion, titled “Race and Democracy: The Facts and The Fury,” is the first of its kind between the nation’s oldest wire service and Allen Media Group’s multimedia platform. It will be carried on APNews.com and theGrio.com, Wednesday at 12 p.m. Eastern. It also will air on theGrio Television Network Series “TheGrio with Marc Lamont Hill” at 7:30 p.m. ET.
“At a time when many Black people say they aren’t seeing themselves represented fairly and humanely across the media, it’s critical that they see legacy news outlets like the AP speaking truth and supporting it with facts,” said Aaron Morrison, editor of AP’s race and ethnicity team. “The future of our democracy depends on responsible journalism that doesn’t shrivel at the mention of race, racism and white supremacy.”
The Allen Media Group approached the AP with the idea of a joint editorial venture during the National Association of Black Journalists convention in Las Vegas in 2022. AP’s Planning Editor for U.S. News Lisa Matthews spearheaded those conversations and after discussions with race and ethnicity editors and reporters at the AP, agreed to work on the project.
Matthews said the joint panel is a timely opportunity for both organizations.
“While the AP and theGrio’s editorial approaches differ, our common goal is to grow and inform our audiences,” she said. “This is a great first step toward doing that in a joint fashion. Having a conversation about what we are reporting and engaging new audiences is critical at this time of uncertainty in the nation.”
The panel features Morrison; AP race and voting reporter Ayanna Alexander; theGrio’s Dr. Christina Greer, a political scientist and host of “Blackest Questions” on theGrio Black Podcast Network; and Dr. Marc Lamont Hill, anchor of “TheGrio with Marc Lamont Hill”. AP’s national race and ethnicity team video journalist Noreen Nasir moderates.
“TheGrio and Associated Press are the stewards of an influential industry as information can transform lives and make a meaningful difference. Ida B. Wells understood this. So did Frederick Douglass,” said Geraldine Moriba, senior vice president of News, Entertainment & Empowerment at the Allen Media Group.
“This partnership is a reminder that representation is not a gift. It is a right,” Moriba said. “As torchbearers of today’s crucial conversations, our role is to examine the challenges to American democracy.”
The Allen Media Group’s theGrio is a member of The Associated Press.