Project Pinwheel

A note about COVID-19

During times of crisis, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, the media can reiterate messages of stress management, mental health support, and child abuse and neglect prevention. You can continue to promote opportunities for connection by phone, video or from a safe distance in person, sharing that connection, support, empathy and encouragement can benefit children and families.

What the Media Can Do

The words you use to tell a story have the potential to influence public opinion and ignite community action.

As a member of the media, your public platform places you in an excellent position to take part in efforts to prevent child abuse and neglect. The stories you choose to tell can do more than report on individual cases. You have the opportunity to report in a way that questions negative stereotypes and highlights child abuse and neglect prevention efforts and strategies in your community.


Use your reporting as a catalyst for good when reporting on child abuse and neglect.

  • Emphasize in your coverage that everyone in the community can help families experiencing domestic violence. Encourage your audiences to get involved and share examples of ways that they can help. Review the other “What Can I Do?” sections on this site for ideas.
  • Highlight proven child abuse and neglect prevention methods such as showing support for parents; ensuring every child has access to quality, safe, affordable childcare; and understanding the importance of building connections with neighbors and engaging in civic or faith groups.
  • Promote community resources to concerned individuals and families who might need help. For example, Vanessa Behan offers non-judgmental childcare support and resources to families in times of crisis or unexpected need. Lutheran Community Services Northwest offers behavioral health, family and community support, and victim advocacy and support services. The YWCA of Spokane offers housing, legal and support services for families impacted by domestic violence.
  • Understand and follow best practices for responsible reporting on topics related to child abuse and neglect.
  • Help those experiencing abuse and neglect by focusing on the root causes associated with abuse and by coupling coverage of data with community solutions and current prevention efforts. If you’re in need of dependable, local information, please refer to the Confronting Violence Report or visit County Health Insights for recent data and statistical analyses.
  • Share with your audience that they can support families, promote community connection and foster child safety by volunteering or partnering with organizations like The Zone Project or Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA).


There are many ways that members of the media, both individually and at the organizational level, can support families and children in efforts to reduce child abuse and neglect. Here are a few ideas:

  • Sponsor or support events for families and children.
  • Encourage an anchor or member of the reporting team to champion efforts that support families or seek to inform on topics related to child abuse and neglect.
  • Press for your news agency or publication to donate advertising space or airtime in support of cause-oriented messaging.


If you need information for an upcoming story or feature, contact the Spokane Regional Health District Public Information Officer / Communications Manager at 509.324.1539 to set up an interview or request more information.