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Why are Letters-to-the-Editor Important?

You can bring awareness to an issue that is overlooked by local news outlets.

Sharing your perspective lets like-minded people in the community know that they are not alone.

Ideas published as long-form letters, like Guest Columns, gain legitimacy when published.

This is your chance to speak directly to voters about what is important to you.

Elected officials read the papers and care what the public thinks about their actions.

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Tips for Writing Effective Letters to the Editor

Follow the rules of the publication (especially word limits).
Do your homework; understand both sides of an issue.
Be accurate. Use clear, specific facts and don’t exaggerate.
Speak plainly and avoid jargon. Your goal is to communicate.
State your core argument clearly in the first or second paragraph.
Be positive when possible.
Don’t insult those who disagree with you.
Have a friend read it and provide feedback.
When you can, wait 24 hours, read it again, then send.

Adapted from local author LeeAnn Kriegh’s workshop with Indivisible Bend

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