Canadians need access to full and reliable sources of news to inform their decisions.

Journalism has long held a watchdog function, reporting about and holding the powerful to account. It aims to inform citizens and strengthen the common good and common understanding.

But, it has become a challenge for news organizations to keep up with coverage of these institutions, amid declining ad revenue and fragmented audiences. News organizations are becoming constrained by a lack of resources and limited reporting capacity, and as a result, coverage of civic institutions has suffered.

The Local Journalism Initiative aims to strengthen coverage of civic institutions, issues and officials, and the issues and debates involving them. By funding a minimum of 93 reporters in its first year, News Media Canada's Local Journalism Initiative program will help ensure people in underserved communities across Canada have access to quality journalism.

Increased coverage of these institutions will promote public awareness, transparency, knowledge and awareness.  Coverage of civic institutions enables people to hold their government and institutions accountable, and helps provide them with the information they need to make decisions in their day-to-day lives.

The Local Journalism Initiative will provide funding for news organizations to hire reporters whose beats will be specific civic institutions and issues.

If you would like more information about the Local Journalism Initiative, see who is eligible, discover answers to frequently asked questions, or apply, visit the LJI website. If there are questions you have that you don’t see answered in this news bulletin or on the website, email us at LJI@newsmediacanada.ca.