We are participating in Democracy Day, in which newsrooms across the country are shining a light on threats to democracy and what action is needed to protect it.

Our staff doesn’t take democracy — and our constitutional right to do our jobs — for granted. We hope you don’t either.

Democracy. It’s the capital D upon which our nation was founded. But there are other capital Ds that played a powerful part in who had freedom, liberty and justice: Disenfranchisement. Discrimination. Disparity. Disinformation. Distrust. Division. Dollars. 

On Democracy Day in 2022, as many people are still reeling from a deadly pandemic, a polarizing political culture and an impotent racial reckoning, it’s worth recognizing that these issues remain as pertinent today as they were in decades past. It’s our responsibility as a free press in Arizona and across America and sovereign Indigenous nations to report and share truths and ensure that the stories of all our communities are told in a fair, ethical, equitable and accurate way.

It’s our responsibility to hold our newsrooms and our news accountable for representing all people, especially the most vulnerable among us. Despite the news taglines, journalists don’t hold power to account. The public does. But people can’t do that if we don’t build trust in local and national news so that everyone feels represented in meaningful ways.

Dianna Náńez, Executive Editor Arizona Luminaria

Arizona Luminaria is a nonprofit local journalism team that’s dedicated to putting people first. We say we light the path so you can take action. What that really means is we are working to listen to you and learn about the issues you care about.

For the past six months, and for as long as you continue to support us, we will keep digging into complex stories of caring people who want to make a difference.

The health of our democracy and of our communities is at stake as politicians and powerful entities work against peace, against truth, against relinquishing privilege. That is the nature of democracy. A government by the people ruled by the majority means there will always be minorities.

A free, trusted, dogged, caring press is one part of the checks and balances that are vital to maintaining a government truly vested in the people they are representing, not in their own personal and political interests. A free press is also a partnership and we must make room for everyone to have a seat at the table in the stories you need to stay informed and feel included.

In the run-up to the November election, Arizona Luminaria’s team is asking for your help in learning what you want to know more about from Tucson, Nogales and Yuma to Flagstaff, the Navajo Nation and rural communities across our beloved desert, borderlands state. 

We’re a small but mighty team working to share stories that strengthen your communities and our democracy.

Use this form to please send us questions you want answered about the midterm election, voting, campaigns, candidates and what will happen after people cast their ballots and the polls close.

And let us know what you think about the first two stories we’ve published today.

One offers a deep dive into how non-voters actually decide elections, how disinformation, discrimination and disenfranchisement contribute to low voter turnout, and what Arizonans are doing to get more people to the polls. 

The other is an easy, breezy, interesting look at education funding, a complicated topic that Arizona Luminaria readers have told us they want to know more about, so they can do their part to ensure every child gets a quality, equitable education, every teacher is fairly supported, and Arizona’s future holds unlimited promise.

Mil gracias,

Dianna M. Náñez and your Arizona Luminaria team

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Dianna Náñez is Arizona Luminaria's Executive Editor and co-founder. She is an investigative journalist, narrative writer/editor and storytelling coach whose story of Indigenous and borderlands communities...