On any beat, journalists and their sources may have differing ethical or cultural codes. This is particularly true when covering First Nations or Métis events and issues. The history of oppression has led many Indigenous people to mistrust official institutions such as the media. Long-term, successful storytelling will require you to educate yourself, build relationships and approach stories with humility.

Here is a rough guide to respecting your sources, maintaining your journalistic principles and accomplishing what’s ultimately beneficial for you, your organization, your sources and the public – better reporting of Indigenous issues.

This information is gleaned from several sources, including CBC reporter Duncan McCue’s Reporting in Indigenous Communities. For a more in-depth perspective, see his section on Aboriginal Customs and Protocols at toms-and-protocols.