Tackling a taboo in newsrooms
UK-based Headlines Network took shape in 2021 to provide resources around journalism-related mental health, digital well-being, and safety to journalists. But the organization’s work is based on decades of experience from their directors — and an even longer history of asking important questions about the issues that matter to everyone.
“The ability to soak up pressure for a journalist was seen as an integral part of the DNA, and newsrooms are quite macho, quite tough,” explains John Crowley, Co-director of Headlines Network. “There's a lot of taboo around talking about your mental health in journalism.”
As a journalist, John had faced burnout, while Founder and Co-director Hannah Storm experienced post-traumatic stress disorder following multiple incidents in her journalism career. Hannah’s experiences contributed to her determination to tackle some of the challenges associated with digital safety and mental health in newsrooms.
The two repeatedly met on industry panels about mental health during the pandemic and realized there were few tangible mental health resources for journalists. They spent the summer of 2021 building a website and workshop plan for Headlines Network.