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All over the world journalists are dedicated to providing you accurate and timely news to inform you of the happenings of where you live, about the next state over or across the world. Newspersons work hard, often long and varying hours to get news to your lap on paper or text on your laptop. Today is a day we nationally recognize newspersons for all they do– it’s National Hug a Newsperson Day!

There are thousands of journalists nationwide who cover everything you need to know. Between the local newsperson giving you information about the events happening in your town, or the national correspondent keeping up with the White House and everyone in between, they’re all important– and without them, we wouldn’t know about everything going on around us.

Not only do journalists supply information to the public, they have an important role as a watchdog, where things may otherwise go unnoticed if it weren’t for them. According to a 2016 study from the Pew Research Center, 75 percent of Americans believe news organizations keep political leaders from doing “things that shouldn’t be done.”

Despite the danger journalists face, they continue working– no matter the consequence. According to the AP, from Jan. 1, 2018, to Dec. 19, 2018, 53 journalists were killed “in retaliation for their work.” The AP also said that imprisonment of journalists has been on the rise.

Journalists are also in a changing world due to the increase of technological advances and the ease of access of getting news on phones. Journalists are constantly adapting to the advancing world around them to ensure that news is still out there, whether you choose to watch it on TV, read it on your phone or pick up a copy of a newspaper.

April 4 is this year’s date to give a simple “thank you” to newspersons who go above and beyond for coverage, and even if you aren’t a hugging newsperson, extend a thank you for all they do.

So, let’s celebrate by extending a hug, or even just a simple “thank you,” to show newspersons around the world that they’re appreciated, that their hard work is being noticed and that we care.