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National News Media Council:

Rachel Watts, a fourth-year undergraduate journalism student at Carleton University’s School of Journalism and Communication, has been selected as the recipient of this year’s Fraser MacDougall Prize for Best New Canadian Voice in Human Rights Reporting for her story Pandemic intensifies silent sorrow of Canada’s asylum seekers, published in Capital Current.

This year’s judges agreed Watts’ story was thorough and eloquently written. The story’s compelling focus on chronicling the challenges asylum seekers face, even after overcoming horrific challenges in their home countries, was both potent and persuasive.

“This story captures so many meaningful nuances which, against the backdrop of the pandemic, have become all the more concerning,” says John Fraser, the executive chair of the National NewsMedia Council. “The story helps to amplify the perspectives, and life experiences, of those whom we do not always hear from in the media but that are important voices that shape our collective worldview.”

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