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Beaumont series shows this independent news site's value. Member donations help us make a difference.

October 05, 2020, 12:01 AM

Metro Detroiters are fortunate to have an array of digital, print and broadcast news sources. Most belong to corporate chains or media groups spanning multiple cities.

Deadline Detroit, part of the daily journalism mix since 2012, is an independent, locally owned voice staffed by professionals committed to no-paywall coverage and commentary with Southeast Michigan impact. Our small team makes a distinctive splash from time to time, most recently with a six-month series of advocacy columns documenting concerns about a merger push by Beaumont Health top executives.

That high-stakes plan was dropped Friday after intensive scrutiny by contributing columnist Eric Starkman, a longtime business journalist who spoke with Beaumont medical professionals, elected officials and industry specialists about potential drawbacks for the nationally recognized hospital network and healthcare consumers.   

"Thank you, Deadline Detroit and Eric Starkman for saving Beaumont from this horrible merger," Dr. David Weissman of Birmingham comments at our site and on Facebook. 

Another reader, Sandra Hughes O'Brien of Northville, posts: "Most journalists in this town just don’t have the guts to aggressively report on such an important story that truly has an impact on real community members and their health. ... Well done."

We appreciate those salutes and others, and we're especially grateful for readers who help sustain our work with membership donations of $3 a month or more. Their loyalty recognizes that quality journalism has value worth supporting.

Starkman's three dozen-plus columns since April contrast with scant reporting until recently on the merger plan by Detroit dailies and with a less aggressive approach by a local business weekly, which presented sponsored content from Beaumont in addition to news coverage. 

Coverage of Beaumont finances and strategy are an example of Deadline's in-depth attention to selected topics by staff members and outside writers, who also report regularly on these issues:

  • Anti-racism protests and the Detroit police response

  • Political campaigns and voting at a time of Covid

  • Health safety and public policy skirmishes between the legislature and governor

  • Facial recognition technology use and video street surveillance by Detroit police

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If that content and other posts -- including Charlie LeDuff's columns and Craig Fahle's podcasts -- are worth reading, we hope you agree they're worth supporting. Thanks for considering Deadline Detroit membership to show you respect indie newsgathering.

Members qualify for monthly giveaways of restaurant gift cards, Stabucks cards and other random-drawing prizes. September's rewards and winners are here.

Thanks for your allegiance and helping preserve an independent voice. 

-- Deadline Detroit staff

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