Beat Reporting (over 25,000 circulation)


Winner: Susan Clairmont, Hamilton Spectator

Clairmont zeros in on a series of appalling failures in Ontario’s justice system in her impactful and compelling entries with concise, engaging writing and vivid detail. She asks: how did this happen? How COULD this happen? The teen who died from a gunshot wound after police waved off paramedics. The insufficiently investigated disappearance of a young woman that left her killer free to murder again – twice. The questions linger and rankle.

Runner-up: Maria Iqbal, Hamilton Spectator

Iqbal excels on a beat underserved in the media until COVID-19 came along – aging. Delving into the devastating conditions in long-term care, she focuses on a nurse who resigned and a personal support worker with PTSD. The quotes Iqbal elicits are heartbreaking: “Mom, you’ve been screaming in your sleep and we haven’t been able to wake you up.”

Runner-up: Catherine Thompson, Waterloo Region Record

In a lively approach to covering regional government, Thompson brings readers into a historic Cold War bunker on the question of whether it should be restored, explores how the wealthy skirted pandemic travel restrictions by flying out of Waterloo Region’s airport, and uses a routine archeological report as a springboard into the life of an Iroquois village of 700 years ago.


Return to full list of winners.

2021 ONAs: Beat Reporting (over 25,000 circulation)