Wednesday, August 17, 2022

EDITORIAL: Why we’re no longer publishing a survivor-themed issue

<p>Approximately 300 pinwheels sit outside the Hannah Administration Building to represent all the survivors of Larry Nassar on June 22, 2018.</p>

Approximately 300 pinwheels sit outside the Hannah Administration Building to represent all the survivors of Larry Nassar on June 22, 2018.

Photo by Annie Barker | The State News

Four years ago ex-MSU doctor Larry Nassar was sentenced to 175 years in prison after decades of sexual abuse.

Since then, The State News has dedicated a January print issue to the Nassar survivors, their stories and the ongoing fallout of Nassar’s conviction. These issues intended to serve as an outlet for those survivors.

However, as we approach the four-year anniversary of the conviction, we’ve decided to stop publishing a Nassar survivor-themed print edition.

We want to be positive allies for survivors of sexual assault and relationship violence. That means adjusting our allyship as time goes on. 

After spring 2021’s survivor issue, we received feedback from multiple groups about various oversights in the issue, from the stories we covered to the ones we regrettably did not.

We felt this issue was no longer serving its original purpose. 

Instead of aiding survivors in their healing, the issue became a source of trauma and a reminder to this community of not only Nassar’s actions, but the university’s lack of action against a sexual predator.

We want to be clear: This doesn’t mean our coverage is over. We will continue to be an ear for survivors and continue to hold the university accountable.

We still demand the Board of Trustees to release over 10,000 documents from the investigation to give survivors their continued closure. We are still diving into the multiple settlements from all the various entities, Michigan State included, that allowed Nassar to continue his abhorrent behavior. We’re still keeping track of MSU’s sexual misconduct policies, Title IX and how these effect survivors.

The State News will continue listening to and reporting on the various student- and faculty-led groups that push for change at our university. 

Survivors are always on our mind. We will continue to be allies for a community that was let down time and time again.

We will not — and we cannot — forget what happened at our university. This is a step of many we have and will take to foster a powerful allyship with survivors as the student voice of Michigan State University.

The State News Editorial Board is composed of Editor-in-Chief Karly Graham, Managing Editor Jayna Bardahl, Campus Desk Editor Wendy Guzman, City Desk Editor Griffin Wiles, Culture Desk Editor Noah Edgar, Sports Desk Editor Eli McKown, Copy Chief SaMya Overall, Multimedia Editors Devin Anderson-Torrez and Rahmya Trewern, Social Media Manager Stephanie McCullum and Diversity Rep. Raenu Charles.

Staff Rep. Morgan Womack did not participate in this editorial.

This story appeared in our Jan. 25 print edition. Read the full issue here.


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