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Canada Three projects by Globe and Mail journalists among finalists for 2017 Michener Award

Three investigative projects by Globe and Mail journalists are among the eight finalists announced Monday for the 2017 Michener Awards for public service journalism.

The Globe is the only media outlet with multiple nominees for the prestigious honour.

“This is an extraordinary honour, one that reflects our commitment to public service journalism,” said Globe editor-in-chief David Walmsley. “The Globe’s three nominations span a diverse range of topics – sexual assault, tainted marijuana and white-collar crime – but together they share a common principle: that dogged investigative journalism can inform and improve the institutions Canadians depend on.”

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The three nominated Globe projects are:

Unfounded, a 20-month-long investigation spearheaded by Robyn Doolittle into the way Canadian police handle sexual-assault complaints. Using data gathered from hundreds of police services across the country, the project showed that sexual-assault complaints are twice as likely to be dismissed as unfounded than complaints in other assault cases. The project was recently honoured with a National Newspaper Award in the investigations category. Ms. Doolittle was awarded journalist of the year.

Tainted, a series of articles by Grant Robertson that exposed how federally regulated medical marijuana was tainted with pesticides. The series forced Health Canada to implement mandatory pesticide testing for all companies in the industry.

Easy Money, an investigation by Grant Robertson and Tom Cardoso. In a year-long data analysis of almost 6,000 securities cases across the country, they found more than $1.1-billion in unpaid fines in Canada, underlining how financial regulators have been ineffective in sanctioning fraudsters and white-collar criminals.

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The Vancouver Sun’s Gordon Hoekstra was also nominated for his investigation of the securities sector, revealing how the B.C. Securities Commission has failed to collect hundreds of millions of dollars in penalties.

Other Michener nominees this year:

Quebec radio network Cogeco Media reporters Monic Néron and Émilie Perreault, who convinced 10 women to go on the record about allegations of sexual misconduct by Gilbert Rozon, the influential impresario who founded the Just for Laughs comedy festival.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation for an investigation by Edmonton-based reporters Jennie Russell and Chuck Rusnell into a $10-million grant the Alberta government awarded to a private foundation to offer an unproven alternative health program.

Global News for its eight-month-long investigation showing how Canada’s immigration system used faulty data that set an excessive threshold for applicants who have a family member with a disability or medical condition.

The Toronto Star for a year-long investigation by Sara Mojtehedzadeh and Brendan Kennedy, which included undercover reporting, exposing the dangerous working conditions of people employed by temp agencies.

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The winner will be announced at Rideau Hall on June 12 by Governor-General Julie Payette.

The Globe's Robyn Doolittle speaks at the #AfterMeToo Symposium on sexual misconduct in the workplace. Doolittle goes into detail about the in-depth Unfounded investigation into police handling of sex assault cases.
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