Write a letter to the editor

In the lead up to next week’s state election, it’s critical that we make sure MPs and candidates know that Queensland voters support safe and legal abortion access, and want them to as well.

How? The humble letter to the editor. Those little letters can have a big impact. Candidates, MPs, and their staffers often trawl through this section of the local paper to find out the issues that people are talking about in their community. Letters to the editor are an effective way to get our agenda on candidates’ radar.

Tips for writing your letter

  • Keep on topic. Choose the idea you want to convey and stick to it. Get straight to the point, and only include essential information.
  • Keep it brief. Aim for 150 words, most papers won’t print anything more than 200 words.
  • Keep it local. Explaining how this issue will affect your local community will increase the chances of having your letter published.
  • Keep it polite. By all means, have an opinion, but avoid andy aggressive or offensive language.
  • Keep it to one publication. A newspaper will be more likely to publish your letter if they know it won't be published anywhere else.
  • Keep it relevant. If the paper has recently published a story on the issue, make sure you refer to it in your letter.
  • Keep it personal. Use your own words, and if you can, include a relevant personal story.
  • Proofread. Proofread. Proofread. If there's one thing that will lessen your chances of being published, it's spelling and grammatical errors. Get someone else to read it before you send it off.
  • Include your contact details. The publication will want to verify who you are before publishing your letter, so it’s a good idea to mention:
    • Your name
    • Your address (street name, suburb, and postcode)
    • Your contact number
    • Your email address

How to write your letter:

Step 1: Choose the the right newspaper (click to view) 

Which newspaper is your MP and candidates most likely to read? Look up the word limit for letters to the editor for that particular newspaper, the submission deadline, and the email address or website form where you should submit your letter.

 

Major papers (click to view) 

Glass House (click to view) 

Sunshine Coast Daily, Sunshine Coast Weekly and Sunshine Coast Sunday: https://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/contact/feedback/

Glasshouse Country News: http://www.glasshousecountry.com/contact/

Burdekin (click to view) 

Mundingburra (click to view) 

Everton (click to view) 

Bonney (click to view) 

Gaven (click to view) 

Maiwar (click to view) 

Pine Rivers (click to view) 

Keppel (click to view) 

Cook (click to view) 

Traeger (click to view) 

Step 2: Personalise the letter (click to view) 

Think about how to make this relevant to you and your local community. Do you have a relevant personal story about this the decriminalisation of abortion would affect you, or someone you know? What is it about this issue that has you riled up? What’s the change you want to see?

Step 3: Call for action (click to view) 

The purpose of this action is to raise awareness and encourage MPs and candidates to pledge to remove abortion from the criminal code. If your MP and/or candidates have already pledged their support, make sure to mention this in your letter and thank them for taking a stand. If they haven’t publicly made pledge, encourage them to do so.

Step 4: Send it in! (click to view) 

You’ve drafted your letter, now it’s time to submit it. Some papers will ask you to copy your letter into the body of an email while others will require you to use their website form. Whatever the format, be sure to include your contact details, including your real name, address and phone number. Most publications won’t publish your letter without this.

What's my local paper?

Major papers (click to view) 

Glass House (click to view) 

Sunshine Coast Daily, Sunshine Coast Weekly and Sunshine Coast Sunday: https://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/contact/feedback/

Glasshouse Country News: http://www.glasshousecountry.com/contact/

Burdekin (click to view) 

Mundingburra (click to view) 

Everton (click to view) 

Bonney (click to view) 

Gaven (click to view) 

Maiwar (click to view) 

Pine Rivers (click to view) 

Keppel (click to view) 

Cook (click to view) 

Traeger (click to view) 

Share your letter with us!

Send us your letter, and let us know if you’re happy for us to use it in campaign communications. If your letter gets published, please make sure to snap a photo of it and send it to: info@fairagenda.org Include your name and state electorate.

Background info (click to view) 

Here’s some information you can refer to in order to draft your letter. But remember to personalise your letter as this will increase its chances of being published.

  • Abortion is currently in Queensland’s Criminal Code, and only considered legal in narrow circumstances.
  • These archaic abortion laws (from 1899!) increase the distress, danger, and financial burden of Queenslanders who need to terminate their pregnancy.
  • Electoral analysis shows that this election can tip Queensland’s parliament to a pro-choice majority, and secure the decriminalisation of abortion. But only if pro-choice candidates win in key marginal seat races around the country.