Index of Impactful News

Index of Impactful News

News impacts your life. Empower a more informed society.

The News Impact Project’s Index of Impactful News provides examples of news stories that have had a positive impact on their communities. This resource provides compelling evidence of the critical role of and need for high-quality local journalism to ensure an informed society.

Whether it’s reporting on the activities of the local government, updates on the local sports teams or coverage of a community event, much of our local journalism has a big impact on the members of the community. Without our local news publishers, we would be at a significant disadvantage.

Scroll down to view the Index entries, alphabetized by news outlet name, and click on the links to read the stories and see how local news is making an impact.


Index of Impactful News

Some stories are behind a paywall. PDFs are shared with permission from the publishers.

Aberdeen News, “Aberdeen hospitals ready for potential surge”

Abilene Reporter-News, “Abilene’s storybook characters miss visitors, but encourage health safety”

The Advocate, “A growing number of towns rely on speeding ticket fines; Here’s how officials are trying to change that”

AllOnGeorgia, “COLUMN: Without Reforms, Jails Could Become Epicenter of COVID-19 Outbreaks”

The Almanac, “Socially distanced celebration: Well-wishers mark 100th birthday in Mt. Lebanon”

Arizona Daily Star, “More than 50% of Tucson COVID-19 deaths have been in nursing homes”

Arizona Republic, ICE agents violated policy, paid women for sex acts at Arizona massage parlors as part of human-trafficking investigation”

Arkansas Democrat Gazette, “Military waste burned in state despite contamination fear”

Arkansas Democrat Gazette, “Hot Springs pursuing thousands for old fines”

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Exclusive: How systems failed to protect Effingham kids before death”

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Doctors & Sex Abuse

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “State ousts Youth Challenge Academy’s longtime director amid AJC/Channel 2 Action News investigation.”

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Nonprofit meant to stem gang violence used to pay Fulton DA”

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “AJC INVESTIGATES: DNA points to former suspect in 1985 church murders”

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Unprotected

Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Virus a sudden setback for school laboring to lift children’s lives”

The Baltimore Sun, “Maryland lawmakers seek UMMS board reform, citing ‘serious concerns’ over deals for Mayor Pugh, others”

The Baltimore Sun, “Baltimore Mayor Pugh amends financial disclosure filings amid scrutiny over book sales to UMMS hospital system”

The Baltimore Sun, “Baltimore Mayor Pugh resigns from UMMS board as 8,700 books she sold to hospital system sit in warehouse”

The Baltimore Sun, “In tax forms, Maryland hospital system labeled book purchase from Baltimore mayor a ‘grant’ to city schools”

The Baltimore Sun, “Where are ‘Healthy Holly’ books? Tens of thousands unaccounted for; Baltimore Mayor Pugh, UMMS give no receipts”

The Baltimore Sun, “Kaiser Permanente, Associated Black Charities paid Baltimore Mayor Pugh almost $200K for ‘Healthy Holly’ books”

The Baltimore Sun, “As a Maryland senator, Pugh pushed bills to benefit hospitals while getting book payments from medical system”

The Baltimore Sun, “Maryland’s state auto insurance fund paid $7,500 to then-Sen. Catherine Pugh’s Healthy Holly company”

The Baltimore Sun, “General Assembly passes reform bill after University of Maryland Medical System, ‘Healthy Holly’ scandal”

The Baltimore Sun, “Baltimore Mayor Pugh resigns amid growing children’s book scandal”

The Baltimore Sun, “Dysfunction in Baltimore police homicide unit went unaddressed as killings hit historic levels”

Bangor Daily News, “Mass eviction in Portland to uproot low income families”

Bay Area News Group, “Who Owns Silicon Valley?”

Billy Penn, “Philly is testing about half as many people as needed to safely reopen, per one measure”

The Bismarck Tribune, “Officials unveil mobile app to help with COVID-19 contact tracing in North Dakota”

The Boston Globe, “Residents and families angry and helpless as coronavirus overwhelms nursing homes”

The Boston Globe, “Why I don’t feel safe wearing a face mask”

The Boston Globe, “State firms lagged in receiving federal coronavirus rescue money”

The Boston Globe, “Baker orders schools stay closed through the end of the school year”

The Boston Globe, “The Valedictorians Project”

Bowling Green Daily News, “Lawsuit: WCRJ inmate claims to have been assaulted by trooper, jail employees”

Bristol Herald Courier, “Critical Mass”

Bucks County Courier Times, “Coronavirus infection numbers in Pa. nursing homes, assisted living mostly secret”

BuzzFeed News, “A Veterans Hospital Changed Its Coronavirus Mask Policy After Employees Complained”

Canyon Courier, “Columbine: 20 Years Later: Lessons Learned” (PDF)

Canyon Courier, “Columbine 20th anniversary: Retired schools communications team member recalls tragedy” (PDF)

Canyon Courier, “Columbine 20th anniversary: Tragedy altered security procedures” (PDF)

Canyon Courier, “Woman who had ‘infatuation’ with Columbine tragedy found dead at Echo Lake” (PDF)

Canyon Courier, “Kids Who Will Change the World” (PDF)

Chicago Sun-Times, “Undocumented immigrants face coronavirus, looming jobs crisis with no real safety net”

Clear Creek Courant, “Digger Stadium: As good as gold: A look back at Golddigger Stadium” (PDF)

Clear Creek Courant, “Digger Stadium: There will never be another quite like it” (PDF)

Clear Creek Courant, “Digger Stadium: Ruschmyer, Morris had the best seats in the house” (PDF)

Clear Creek Courant, “Digger Stadium: Old-timers have cherished memories of iconic field” (PDF)

Cosmopolitan, “I Shop Your Online Grocery Orders and It’s Scary Out There”

Des Moines Register, “Iowa Mourns

Detroit Free Press, “I let my wife cut my hair. I might never go back to a barber again.”

Detroit Free Press, “Mayor Mike Duggan set her up to succeed. That raises questions.”

Detroit Free Press, “Detroit rape victim: Wrong man may be in prison for my assault”

Detroit Free Press, “How Detroit Tigers pitcher Matt Boyd is saving 36 girls in Uganda”

Dickinson Press, “Complaints on mail delivery at Dickinson prompt investigation;  newspapers, other mail found in dumpsters” (PDF)

The Florida Times-Union, “Last-minute maneuvers allow Jacksonville lawyer to become judge without an election”

Focus Daily News, “Local Mansfield restaurants Feel The Bite From COVID-19

Focus Daily News, “Mansfield ISD, Church, Restaurant, Non-Profit feeding Kids

Focus Daily News, “Moms Rally After Virus Cancels Couple’s Wedding

Fox 6 Now, “‘Everybody is concerned:’ Former union rep claims at least 6 COVID-19 cases at Patrick Cudahy”

Gannett Texas, “Coronavirus outbreak in Texas: A daily look at life across the state”

The Goshen News, “Goshen College celebrates ‘unforgettable class of 2020′”

The Herkimer Times Telegram, “Essential workers can get child-care aid”

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, “Tourists using transient rentals to bypass Hawaii quarantine restrictions prove hard to track”

Indianapolis Star, “Health experts are calling Indiana an emerging coronavirus hot spot. But how bad is it?”

Indianapolis Star, “Indianapolis is the largest city in the nation without police body cameras”

Indianapolis Star, “AG Curtis Hill’s law license suspended for 30 days by Indiana Supreme Court”

Jackson Sun, “How Jackson’s city finances fell into disarray” (PDF)

Jackson Sun, “How Jackson’s city finances fell into disarray, Part 2: Moving money and hidden expenses” (PDF)

Jackson Sun, “What we know (and don’t) about stay-at-home orders”

Jewish Exponent, “11-Year-Old Sews ‘Superhero’ Masks For Charity”

Juneau Empire, “City considering cutting City Museum to balance budget

Kaiser Health News, Not Yesterday’s Cocaine: Death Toll Rising From Tainted Drug”

KARE 11, “KARE 11 Investigates: State lab inflated cost of rape kit testing”

Knoxville News Sentinel, “Regulators deleted and altered radiological test results on coal ash from Kingston spill”

Lehigh Valley Live, “‘Pictures for Patients’ a way to inspire hope without visiting Lehigh Valley rehab hospital”

Lehigh Valley Live, “‘She can’t leave me if she wanted to’: Williams couple, in self-isolation, marks 50 years.”

Los Angeles Times, “One by one, nurses got coronavirus at a Silicon Valley hospital while management kept quiet”

Los Angeles Times, “U.S. factories in Mexico are still open. As the coronavirus spreads, workers are dying”

Los Angeles Times, “Coronavirus strikes California hospital workers hard, including 175 cases at UCLA”

Los Angeles Times, “Younger blacks and Latinos are dying of COVID-19 at higher rates in California”

Louisville Courier-Journal, “Where a woman delivers her baby in Kentucky can determine how safe she is” (PDF

The Mercury, “Chester County meat production plant takes proactive steps to protect employees during pandemic”

The Mercury News, “Coronavirus: “Nightmarish conditions,” infections, abuse in facilities owned by Bay Area nursing home operators”

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “Mayor won’t say how many Patrick Cudahy plant workers have coronavirus as OSHA opens investigation into safety practices”

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “Health officials can track where coronavirus is spreading by interviewing patients. Some in Milwaukee say that never happened.”

Mississippi Clarion Ledger, “Emails show Phil Bryant, Brett Favre ties to company linked to welfare embezzlement scandal”

Modern Farmer, “How Five Friends Are Saving Their Tulip Farm From COVID-19”

Modern Farmer, “Hundreds of USDA Meat Inspectors Are Getting Sick”

NBC Washington, “‘It’s Like a War Zone’: Grocery Store Employees Urge More Protection on the Front Lines”

The Nevada Independent, “Even before COVID-19 pandemic, Nevada’s withered unemployment insurance system struggled to handle workload”

The Nevada Independent, “For years, a public water district blurred the line between business and government — with a developer’s brothel workers at the helm” (PDF)

The Newton Kansan, “Mismatched demographics: Newton district’s staff not reflective of growing student diversity”

The New Yorker, “Twenty-four hours at the epicenter of the pandemic.”

The New York Times, “Top E.R. Doctor Who Treated Virus Patients Dies by Suicide”

The New York Times, “Life and Death in the ‘Hot Zone'”, “N.J. failed to fix unemployment system for 19 years, records show. Now Murphy pleads patience.”, “A family was told their dad at Paramus vets home was rebounding from COVID. He had died hours earlier”

The Oregonian, “No Mercy”

The Oregonian, “Thousands of untested sex assault kits piled up in trail of broken promises by Portland police”

The Oregonian, “Polluted by Money”

Perry County Times, “Schools bridge lonely divide with food and more”

The Philadelphia Inquirer, “Philly’s women- and minority-owned businesses say they’re getting the shaft on emergency coronavirus loans”

The Philadelphia Sun, “Hey Philly: Free or low cost Internet and wifi; cell phone companies offering payment extensions and plans”

The Philadelphia Tribune, “Philly families search for a safe place to stay as city quarantine hotel rooms go empty”

The Pine Bluff Commercial, “Civil Rights lawyers file complaint against Arkansas officials over COVID-19 in prisons”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Mennonites, Amish face growing recognition of widespread sexual abuse in their communities”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “After years of abuse, a Mennonite couple reconnects with each other and their family”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Plain community sexual abuse victims sometimes pressured to take offenders back”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Officials say communication, cooperation has increased between Plain communities and police, social services”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “A woman raised in a Mennonite church travels South to confront her past and report abuse”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Mennonite and Amish sexual abuse victims find each other and find their voices”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Ohio-based mission worker accused of abuse in Haiti”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “After criticism, mission agency seeks greater amends over Haiti abuse scandal”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Ohio ex-missionary sentenced to 9 years in prison in child sex abuse cases”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “A year of reckonings in the Amish, Mennonite communities”

The Post and Courier, “The Greenland Connection: Greenland is a wonderland of ice. Its melting glaciers could seal the Lowcountry’s fate.”

The Post and Courier, “SC health department warned lawmakers for years: Budget cuts ‘jeopardized’ its pandemic plan”

The Post and Courier, “Downtown Charleston restaurant new to delivery accused of charging $18 for $2 frozen pizza”

The Post and Courier, “The Conway hospital sues its patients more than any other hospital in SC”

Press of Atlantic City, “Dispatching practices contribute to Sea Isle’s fire problems

ProPublica, “Health Officials Recommended Canceling Events with 10-50 People. Then 33,000 Fans Attended a Major League Soccer Game.”

ProPublica Illinois, “Not All Schools Can #KeepLearning”

Rapid City Journal, “Meade County Planning Board knew Hideaway Hills was built over mine as early as 2000”

The Reporter, “Chris Freind: The silver linings of this pandemic”

The Salt Lake Tribune, “Utah attorney general suspends state contract with Banjo in light of founder’s KKK past”

The Salt Lake Tribune, “How the University of Utah’s police department treated female victims and officers for years before Lauren McCluskey’s killing”

The Salt Lake Tribune, “University of Utah police officer showed off explicit photos of Lauren McCluskey to his co-worker”

San Francisco Chronicle, “Families left in dark as coronavirus races through Bay Area nursing homes”

San Francisco Chronicle, “‘There was not a protocol for this’: How our photojournalists are covering coronavirus”

Searchlight New Mexico, “The purge before the surge”

Sidney Herald, “Policing the Police: Part I” (PDF)

Sidney Herald, “Policing the Police: Part II” (PDF)

Sioux Falls Argus Leaders, “Smithfield workers asked for safety from COVID-19. Their company offered cash.”

South Florida Sun Sentinel, “In their own words: On the front lines of South Florida’s coronavirus fight”

Spotlight PA, “Businesses tied to Gov. Tom Wolf, top Pa. senator close after questions about how they qualified as ‘life-sustaining’”

Spotlight PA, “CUT, NOW CRUCIAL: Pa. slashed its ranks of contact tracing nurses. Now, they are pivotal to reopening, but only a fraction remain.”

Susquehanna Independent, “Seamstresses step up as governor urges universal masking”

Tampa Bay Times, “Florida medical examiners were releasing coronavirus death data. The state made them stop.”

Tampa Bay Times, “The Helpers: SPC professor creates 3D-printed face shields for medical workers”

Tampa Bay Times, “Ron DeSantis said New York stay-at-home order caused flights to Florida to spike. But did they?”

Tampa Bay Times, “Florida’s count of coronavirus deaths is missing some cases”

TAPinto South Plainfield, “Homeschooling Children With Special Needs During COVID-19 Quarantine – Parents Speak Candidly About the Challenges and Realizations”

TAPinto South Plainfield, “Elks Lodge #2298 Donates $4,000 for Diabetic Alert Dog for South Plainfield Resident Samantha Kaczmarczyk”

TAPinto South Plainfield, “South Plainfield Senior Center Makes Homemade Fabric Masks for Seniors and Community”

TAPinto South Plainfield, “First COVID-19 Saliva Test in US Launched by South Plainfield-Based Accurate Diagnostic Labs and Rutgers University Cell & DNA Repository”

The Texas Tribune, “In East Texas, thousands of Easter lilies with no place to go”

Times Observer, “Our Opinion: Be careful with testing kits”

Times West Virginian, “WVU Medicine’s COVID-19 guidelines on debt collection raises concern for patients”

Tioga Publishing, “Local farms holds dairy drive-up donation”

Town and Country, “Domestic Violence Calls, Incidents Rise In MontCo During Covid-19 Crisis”

TribLive, “Tarentum woman recovering from crash injuries sews hundreds of masks for others”

Tri-County Independent, “Pursuit Field Hockey Creates “Quarantine Challenge””

USA Today, “Coronavirus leads to meat shortage, milk being dumped”

USA Today, “Coronavirus at meat packing plants worse than first thought, USA TODAY investigation”

The Washington Post, “When coronavirus strikes, kids make the news”

WBEZ, “Chicago Seized And Sold Nearly 50,000 Cars Over Tickets Since 2011, Sticking Owners With Debt

WFAE, “Facing Eviction, Transitional Shelter for Homeless Families Fights for Its Life”

WFAE, “An ‘Angel’ Buys A House For Homeless Program Facing Eviction”

Wisconsin State Journal, “Read all about it: Minimal risk of COVID-19 coronavirus transmission from newspapers”

Featured stories on the blog:

Click below to view our blog posts featuring stories from the Index, sharing more insight and detail from the newsrooms themselves into how a story idea originated and the process for getting it published.

Learn More

Please contact Alliance Reporter, Trends & Insights Jennifer Peters with questions or for more information.

Send Us Your Stories

If you are a journalist, editor or other newsroom member with an impactful story to share, click below for more information on the the News Impact Project and to submit your story for inclusion in the Index of Impactful News.


Often, the nuanced reporting of a local news outlet that is intimately familiar with the community is how we learn about important developments.


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