The importance of ABC local radio
Along with the rest of the country, from 2019 onwards the Central Coast has been affected by the disasters of bushfires and the Covid-19 pandemic.
In these situations, it is essential that the community is provided with current and accurate information, for example, about the localities of fires or infections and the numbers of people affected.
At a time when local newspapers have been confronted with closure or reduced coverage through loss of revenue a trusted local radio service becomes vital.
ABC Radio Central Coast provides the local community with invaluable information concerning testing and vaccination rates, locations where infections have occurred as well as the consequences of the lockdown and other restrictions for Central Coast residents.
I have been asked to contribute a small segment My Community each week as a social scientist, after I led the successful campaign during the Covid-19 pandemic to get soap installed, Operation Soap in Public Toilets.
The Breakfast Team was most responsive to my concern about soap and invaluable in giving me a voice, and Scott Levi's knowledge of the local people and culture, leaders, Council and processes is incomparable.
With media organisations under continued pressure from online platforms such as Google and Facebook, the maintenance of local media outlets has become increasingly difficult.
Given the likelihood that communities will continue to face emergencies on a greater scale and frequency the importance of local media such as ABC Local Radio is more apparent than ever.
We need producers, researchers and journalists with the contacts, knowledge and expertise to provide local audiences with an awareness and understanding of the events and issues that are affecting them.
Email, 1 Sep 2021
Stephanie Short, Woy Woy