Regional newsgroup JPIMedia is urging readers to #supportlocal by encouraging people to order food from local businesses affected by closures imposed by the coronavirus outbreak.
JPI-owned Portsmouth daily The News and its sister titles have asked for the public’s help in amplifying local businesses’ work through the collective voice of the paper. In an article in today’s The News, the paper asks its readers: “We want to hear how you are supporting businesses local to you and if you run a business tell us what you are doing and how we can support you.”
The paper has advertised local schemes that include pubs offering takeaway meals and delivering them to the elderly, and restaurants that are delivering healthy meals to staff at Queen Alexandra Hospital.
The News has also launched a ‘Help our QA Heroes’ campaign to gather food donations and essential supplies for NHS workers at the Portsmouth hospital. Queen Alexandra’s has the highest number of deaths due to Covid-19 out of acute hospital trusts in England.
News editor Mark Waldron said, “We want to support our NHS staff who are working hard to look after their patients, but we want to make sure someone is looking after them.
“The support of the community will undoubtedly bring a morale boost to those who are going to work every day in our city’s hospital.”
Yesterday JPIMedia told staff that all of its free newspapers which are delivered directly to homes would cease printing temporarily due to the financial and logistical challenges, including loss of advertising revenue. Papers affected included the MK Citizen, the Brighton & Hove Independent, and the Mid Sussex Gazette.
JPI continues to produce paid-for newspapers including dailies the Yorkshire Post and the Scotsman.