Beach Mirror reporter Joanna Lavoie won Unifor Local 87-M’s ninth annual Labour Journalism Award for her coverage of the October 2014 strike at WoodGreen Community Services, one of the city’s oldest and largest social service agencies.
“Ms. Lavoie’s win shows that great labour journalism is happening across the media spectrum, whether at small weekly community papers, such as the Beach Mirror, broadcast news or large daily newspapers,” Paul Morse, president of Unifor 87-M, said in a June 22 release.
“Her frontline reportage brings home how important labour issues are to people and the communities in which they live and work.”
In the release, Unifor said Lavoie’s “reporting and photography took readers inside the first-ever strike at the 78-year-old east-end Toronto organization last year when 500 unionized staff walked off the job after half a year of negotiations broke down. Two weeks after hitting the picket line, the union and agency reached a new three-year deal.”
Unifor’s Labour Journalism Award, which is open to Unifor 87-M members, was designed to recognize excellence in reporting about work-related issues. Past winners have reported on topics as far ranging as the plight of nannies, the impacts of right-to-work legislation in the United States, and the demise of a historic Canadian steel mill.
Unifor Local 87-M represents 2,500 newspaper and broadcast workers across southern Ontario, including workers at Metroland Media community newspapers. Formed in 2013 through the merger of the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada, it is the largest private-sector union in Canada representing more than 305,000 workers across all major sectors of the economy.
In late March, Lavoie also received a 2014 Media Award from The Toronto Professional Fire Fighters’ Association for Best Print Article, Circulation Under 100,000 for her article titled “Police investigate ‘suspicious’ fire in Leslieville”.
Back in 2009, she won a Suburban Newspapers of America Award for Best In-depth Reporting for coverage of Korex workers striking outside the former Lever Brothers plant in the city’s east end.
Visit http://goo.gl/ujGKn8 and http://goo.gl/a46KrP to view Lavoie’s latest award-winning articles online.