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Michigan Radio receives Peabody Award nomination

The Peabody Awards Board of Jurors today announced that the Michigan Radio news story, “Nine Days in a Michigan Abortion Clinic, as Election Looms” has been nominated for a prestigious Peabody Award in the Radio/Podcast category. The Peabody Awards are recognized as one of the highest honors in the field of journalism with the most powerful, enlightening and invigorating stories in television, radio and digital media being celebrated each year.

On Nov. 8, Michigan voters will decide whether to put the right to an abortion in the state constitution by voting on Proposal 3. To better understand what's at stake, Michigan Radio got a rare degree of access to Northland Family Planning. For nine days in August and September, we shadowed a doctor and clinic staff through every step of the process.

In November of 2022, Michigan voters were asked whether they should pass a constitutional amendment that would protect the right to an abortion. This was following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision, which overturned Roe v. Wade and revoked the national constitutional right to abortion.

In "Nine Days in a Michigan Abortion Clinic, as Election Looms,” Michigan Radio reporter Kate Wells covered the complex, confusing, and at times contradictory legal landscape abortion providers and patients had suddenly been thrust into. Her months of prior coverage of this issue created a trust that allowed her to gain unprecedented access to a group of clinics in metro Detroit: Northland Family Planning.

The result was a radio story that aired in late October, 2022, less than two weeks ahead of the election. The feature included interviews with many patients, some of whom traveled to Michigan from out of state, and brought their stories to life. Kate’s reporting powerfully showed the full range of human experience in this clinic, the emotional complexity, and the impact of the current threats to reproductive rights on real women. This story was reported by Kate Wells, with editing by Sarah Hulett and Lindsey Smith, and production assistance by Mercedes Mejia and Laura Weber Davis.

Nine Days in a Michigan Abortion Clinic, as Election Looms” was nominated for a Peabody Award alongside such notable projects as “The Pink House at the Center of the World” from This American Life, the “Still Newtown” podcast from WSHU and “Stolen: Surviving St. Michael’s” from Spotify & Gimlet Media. You can find the complete list of nominees here.

This is the second time that Michigan Radio has been nominated for a Peabody Award. In 2019, the Michigan Radio podcast Believed won the Peabody Award in the Radio & Podcast category.

The winners of the 83rd annual Peabody Awards will be announced on May 9 and then celebrated on Sunday, June 11 at a ceremony at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles.