WBTV addresses violence in the news cycle with primetime special

WBTV On Your Side: Community Conversation

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - As a leader in the Charlotte community, WBTV News is proactively addressing recent violence in the headlines. On Tuesday, August 2nd, at 8:00 p.m., WBTV News will present "WBTV On Your Side: Community Conversation" on all of its platforms: WBTV, Bounce and streaming across WBTV digital products.

"One of the traits of strong communities and organizations is having the ability and willingness to discuss weaknesses and areas in need of improvement as easily as we speak about our strengths," says WBTV Vice President and General Manager Scott Dempsey. "We're hoping this community forum is a step in the right direction."

The decision to pre-empt primetime CBS and Bounce programming to devote resources to a project of this magnitude comes as tragic events have devastated communities and families across the United States and around the world. Brutally graphic videos on social media, targeted attacks on law enforcement and mass murders dominate the news cycle. Social media reactions are polarized and, often, the most extreme voices are given the most attention. WBTV News recognizes the negative effect this can have on the audience and will use its resources to amplify solutions to the challenges facing our communities.

"We have a responsibility to serve and a commitment to be 'on your side' as a community resource," says WBTV News Director Dennis Milligan. "This is one way we can use our platforms to promote positive change."

WBTV anchors Molly Grantham and Steve Crump reached out to a variety of local leaders, such as Patrick Graham, President/CEO of Urban League of Central Carolinas, and CMPD Police Chief Kerr Putney to talk about issues facing our communities in this one-hour primetime special. They also visited a few spots in Charlotte to hear from the general public. The goal is to candidly discuss uncomfortably difficult topics like race relations and identify ways to improve our communities.

Your ideas are also welcome. Share them directly with WBTV or on social media using #WBTVandMe.

Program Information: WBTV On Your Side Community Conversation Tuesday, August 2, 8:00-9:00 p.m. on WBTV, simulcast on Bounce TV

Raycom Media, an employee-owned company, is one of the nation's largest privately owned broadcasters and owns and/or provides services for 63 television stations in 42 markets and 20 states. Raycom Media owns or provides services for stations covering over 14% of U.S. television households and employs over 4,600 individuals in full and part-time positions. In addition to television stations, Raycom Media owns PureCars (digital ad platform for automotive), Raycom Sports (a marketing, production and events management and distribution company), Tupelo-Honey Productions (a NY-based production company), RTM Productions (a Franklin, TN-based automotive programming production and marketing solutions company), WebStream Sports (an Indianapolis-based, live event production company) and Broadview Media (a post-production/digital signage company based in Montgomery, AL). Raycom Media is headquartered in Montgomery, Alabama.

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