For the first time in Australian media history, 46 News Corp newspaper mastheads have united with a collective front page for a vital campaign to save Queensland kids’ lives.
This landmark campaign, led by News Corp’s Queensland metro masthead The Courier-Mail, is being run in conjunction with Quest Community News titles and News Regional Media regional daily titles from Cairns to the Gold Coast.
The S.O.S (Save Our Schoolkids) campaign, launched today, is backed by the Australian Water Safety Council, Royal Life Saving Society Australia, Surf Life Saving Australia and leading Olympians Cate and Bronte Campbell.
The Courier-Mail editor Sam Weir said: “This is a unique stance we’ve taken to shine a light on the outrageous fact that Queensland does not include compulsory swimming lessons in primary schools.
“Swimming is a way of life in Queensland and we are failing our children by not providing them with the opportunity to learn how to swim.
“We are calling for the Queensland government to stop being the only state which does not fund a comprehensive and compulsory swimming program in our schools.”
NRM editorial director Bryce Johns said: “Our mastheads operate along Queensland’s vast coastline. This is a campaign which affects kids in regional areas as much as in our cities.”
Quest Community News editor-in-chief Jodie Powell said: “There’s something special about a Queensland childhood spent splashing in pools, beaches and dams. It’s vital that we ensure that our kids are being kept safe and learn the basic skill of swimming.”
The campaign – conceptualised by The Courier-Mail editorial team led by head of news Melanie Pilling – will run in The Courier-Mail and associated mastheads from Wednesday, January 31. It shows the strength of newspapers in Queensland and the connection with their local communities to drive change for the better.