TORONTO, April 21, 2015 /CNW/ - Heather Mallick, a staff columnist with the Toronto Star, is the winner of The Landsberg Award for 2015.

Presented by The Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF) in association with the Canadian Women's Foundation, The Landsberg Award celebrates a journalist who gives greater profile to women's equality issues. Now in its second year, the award recognizes a working journalist doing exceptional research, analysis and writing through a gender lens about women's equality issues in Canada across print, broadcast or online news from the previous year.

Mallick's work in 2014 included "Prostitution: lessons from Europe's streets," a feature exploring the legal framework surrounding prostitution in other countries during Canada's debate over laws governing the sex trade. Other articles about the same subject matter included "It's 11 a.m. at the biggest brothel in Europe" and "The view from inside the Amsterdam sex window."

"Mallick's writing is extraordinary—by sheer force of originality and focused empathy, she makes the reader feel the story—and is oblique enough to leave some of the emotional work to the reader," says Michele Landsberg, the award's namesake and selection jury member. "Of the thousands of words written about the prostitution debate, hers were the only ones to mention the economic basis of the trade and situate it in our capitalist system. Her sharp perceptions and quirkiness of expression make the stories come alive and provoke thought."

Mallick, a staff columnist at the Toronto Star since 2010, has previously written for CBC.ca, The Globe and Mail and other media. She is the author of two books, Pearls in Vinegar and Cake or Death.

"Women's rights get mainstream attention, but the suffering of prostitutes has always been well below the radar," says Mallick. "After the Supreme Court told the federal government that prostitution laws must change, I wondered what other nations were doing to help, or hurt, these scorned women. After travelling to Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands, it became clear the story was as much about money as about sex. The high-volume sexual retail industry was eager to come to Canada, still is. The story was distressing—and astonishing."

Mallick will receive a $5,000 prize from the Canadian Women's Foundation, to be presented at the annual CJF Awards on June 3 in Toronto at The Fairmont Royal York.  The award is named after Landsberg—an award-winning Canadian journalist, author, social activist and feminist—to acknowledge the tremendous impact she has had as an advocate and role model for women.

"The large response to this year's Landsberg Award is good news for women and for journalism," says Sally Armstrong, chair of the jury. "We were very impressed by the impact the fearless columns and investigative features had on readers across the country. The analysis of power and inequality on everything from business and law to families and institutions showed a remarkable understanding of the issues facing women and girls in Canada."

Jury
Chair - Sally Armstrong, journalist, human rights activist and author
Wendy Freeman, president, CTV News
Matt Galloway, host, Metro Morning, CBC Radio One
Sheherazade Hirji, president and CEO, Canadian Women's Foundation
Tyler Hamilton, editor-in-chief, Corporate Knights magazine
Michele Landsberg, journalist, author, feminist and social justice advocate
Anne-Marie Mediwake, co-host, CBC News Toronto
Barb Williams, president, Shaw Media and executive vice-president, broadcasting


ABOUT THE LANDSBERG AWARD

Now in its second year, The Landsberg Award is proudly presented by The Canadian Journalism Foundation in association with the Canadian Women’s Foundation.

The award will celebrate a journalist who is raising awareness about women’s equality issues in Canada and aims to inspire an increase in the media coverage and voice of women in Canada.

The award is named after Michele Landsberg—an award-winning Canadian journalist, author, social activist and feminist—to acknowledge the tremendous impact that she has had as an advocate and role model for all women in Canada. The award will inspire relentless and fearless journalists to consider Canadian news from a women’s equality perspective.

Discussion


ABOUT MICHELE LANDSBERG
Articulate, tenacious, progressive and persuasive, award-winning former Toronto Star columnist Michele Landsberg is one of Canada's best known feminists and social justice activists. A fearless advocate for women and children over many decades, she uses words, in print and in person, to fight injustice, to attack oppressive power structures and policies, and to champion the cause of human rights, race and gender equality, peace and pluralism. Through her columns, she gave a strong public voice to many of those who would otherwise not be heard.

 

DEFINITION OF THE AWARD
This award will recognize a working journalist (employed or freelance) doing exceptional research, analysis and writing through a gender lens about women's equality issues in Canada.

FORM OF THE AWARD
The award recipient will receive a $5,000 prize from the Canadian Women's Foundation.

ELIGIBILITY
Awarded to one working journalist (employed or freelance) who has done the most to shine a spotlight on women’s equality issues in Canada in print, broadcast or online news reporting in 2014.

JURY
See the list of jurors for this award.

HOW TO APPLY
Submit one to three examples (in English or French) of original work in print, broadcast or online news reporting that demonstrates exceptional research, analysis and writing through a gender lens and shines a spotlight on women’s equality issues in Canada.  Applicants are asked to submit a 250 word personal statement addressing the following questions:
1.  How did a gender analysis and feminist framework inform your work?
2.  What impact did your stories have?
3.  What long-term impact do you hope to have with your writing on raising awareness of issues facing women and girls in Canada?

AWARD OPENS: February 2, 2015
DEADLINE
: March 8, 2015, 5:00 p.m. ET

 

This award is now closed. Thank you to all applicants.
 

The award will be presented at the 2015 CJF Awards on June 3, 2015 at The Fairmont Royal York in Toronto.

Twitter: #LandsbergAward


The Canadian Journalism Foundation is proud to present this award in association with:

The Canadian Women’s Foundation is Canada’s public foundation for women and girls. We empower women and girls in Canada to move out of violence, out of poverty and into confidence. Since 1991, we’ve raised money and invested in over 1,300 community programs across Canada, and are now one of the ten largest women’s foundations in the world. We take a positive approach to address root causes of the most critical issues facing women and girls. We study and share the best ways to create long-term change and bring community organizations together for training and to learn from each other. We carefully select and fund the programs with the strongest outcomes and regularly evaluate their work. We have a special focus on building a community of women helping other women. Helping women creates safer families and communities, and a more prosperous society for all of us. We invest in the strength of women and the dreams of girls. For more information please visit www.canadianwomen.org.