Journalists Toolbox: Getting the Marriage Story Right

The NLGJA Journalists Toolbox is designed primarily to assist journalists who don’t normally cover the LGBT community.

nlgjawebsiteheaderThe advice is drawn from outside media experts and our own members who are professional journalists for both mainstream media and the LGBT press. We also offer story ideas and new ways of thinking for reporters who are experienced in covering LGBT life.

“Getting the Marriage Story Right: The History, Current Law & the Future” offers tips on how journalists can improve fair and accurate coverage of marriage for same-sex couples.

This version has been updated to reflect new developments in the past few months in California, the Midwest and New England.

Here’s an excerpt:

“The battle over marriage rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans has been a major news story for much of this decade. It continues to be an ever-evolving story, with new developments arising throughout the country each year.

“Reporters covering the debate should remember that marriage laws are determined by state governments, yet federal laws and regulations (such as the tax code) relating to marriage are an essential part of the story (see Defense of Marriage Act). Traditionally, in accordance with the fourth article of the U.S. Constitution, each state has recognized marriage licenses issued in other states.

“Journalists reporting on this complex subject should also note the differences between civil unions and marriage.”

Click here to read the complete article.

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