The Express News Group
Dear Readers and Supporters of The Express News Group,
These are trying times.
That’s true for every business in America. It’s true for every individual struggling to recover from COVID-19, mourning the loss of someone who succumbed to it, helping someone else through it, or desperately trying to avoid getting and spreading it. Stores and restaurants are closed, jobs are lost, paychecks missed.
Everyone is affected. And the Express News Group is, too. Our newspapers have been serving the East End for a combined 280 years, and like so many others we have come upon hard times. Nobody knows how big the gathering storm will be, and what it will swallow up.
When the federal government ordered businesses to close in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19, only certain industries -- labeled “essential” -- were exempt. That includes the local media.
There’s a good reason: In a world of fake news and rapidly spreading false information, we pride ourselves on providing readers with local journalism, real facts, that matter to them most in a time of crisis.
But we are a small business, too, one that relies on so many other local businesses to thrive -- and this is not a good time for any of us.
It is our goal to continue covering the news. We will call the hospitals, track down public officials, ask the tough questions, and we will also tell the stories of the recovery. We hope soon to tell stories about people recovering from COVID-19, about businesses coming together to help each other survive a desperate time, and about our brightest lights shining through in a time of darkness.
It is more important than ever that we earn your support. There’s no other way to say it: This is an existential crisis for local media, including the Express News Group.
We ask our dedicated readers to help in any way they can. Certainly, if you’re not a paid subscriber, please become one. If you’re in a position to offer a donation to help keep our award-winning newsroom operating through the crisis, please do. If you’re a local business, looking to cut costs, think twice before cutting back on a way to reach out to the community and, at the same time, to put money into a local institution that matters.
Your generosity will be remembered for years to come.
We are also putting together advertising programs that will give those who step up now, in our time of need, a tremendous amount of exposure for their advertising dollar -- both now, during the crisis, when so many people count on our coverage every day, and after the inevitable recovery begins. With luck, that will be in weeks, not months. Either way, the timely support will be returned when it matters most.
Like so many businesses, we’ve had to cut back. Much of our award-winning newsroom is on the sidelines for now, as are crucial members of the team elsewhere. But we will continue to report on this unique community, in print and online. We won’t give up the ship, no matter how the storm rages.
We not only want to continue doing our job, we feel we have to.
We are essential.
Gavin and Kathryn Menu
Publishers, The Express News Group
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