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WQED calls for community to notify their Congressional representatives


WQED calls for community to notify their Congressional representatives
to maintain this essential service

PITTSBURGH – A Bill that will be debated on the floor of the House of Representatives in Washington the week of February 14 could lead to the elimination of federal funding to public broadcasting television and radio stations nationwide. The effect on WQED and its 57-year history of free educational public service media to the region would be devastating.

WQED is asking the community to immediately contact their Congressional Representative to urge support of federal funding for public broadcasting. Each local Representative’s contact information can be found on the following link when people enter their state and nine-digit zip code - https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml.

Federal funding provides an important share of WQED’s operating funding – approximately 12% or $2 million per year. WQED then raises additional funds from individual memberships, local and national foundations and the corporate community for local television and radio production, for its Education Department and for WQED Interactive, its interactive media distribution portal. State operating funding to Pennsylvania public broadcasters was eliminated last year.

“Federal funding helps us to deliver WQED-TV’s educational and commercial-free programs for children and adults, WQED-FM’s one-of-a-kind classical music service, award-winning local shows, and favorite PBS programs. It’s one of the worthiest places to invest federal dollars, and national research proves it,”* said Deborah L. Acklin, President and Chief Executive Officer of WQED.

“In an age of 500 channels, talking heads, shouting, reality shows, and children’s programs designed to sell toys, WQED and public broadcasting stay true to their original mission. It’s why we continue to produce and air programming that is free of commercial influence and dedicated toward education and illumination – not to tell you what to think, but to make you think.”

Public television and radio stations nationwide have banded together to meet and reverse the threat through grassroots feedback from people who value public broadcasting. WQED has joined with other public television and radio stations in an unprecedented effort to harness the enthusiasm of the 170 million Americans who watch, listen to or use the services and programming of public service media each month. The centerpiece of the campaign is a web site – 170MillionAmericans.org – that represents the effort to engage the support and energy of listeners and viewers in local communities across the country.
The 170 Million Americans campaign was founded on the belief that now, more than ever, the United States needs a strong public media system as a source of non-partisan news, local cultural programming and non-commercial educational programs. Public funding ensures that public service media will continue to enhance the quality of life of our local communities through its offerings of children’s programming, news and public affairs, music and culture, and more.

*Roper Poll ranks PBS and Public Television as the second-most valued service funded by tax dollars after military defense.

WQED Pittsburgh, honored with the 2007 and 2006 Mid-Atlantic Emmy® Award for Station Excellence, was founded in 1954 as the nation’s first community-supported broadcaster. The people of WQED create, produce and distribute quality programs, products and services to engage, inform, educate and entertain the public within their community and around the world. WQED Pittsburgh is one of the first broadcasters in the country to be fully high-definition (HD) in its studio and field production capabilities. It is the parent company of WQED-TV (PBS); WQED: The Neighborhood Channel; WQED: The Create Channel; WQEX-TV (A ShopNBC affiliate); Classical WQED-FM 89.3/Pittsburgh; Classical WQEJ-FM 89.7/Johnstown; local and national television and radio productions; WQED Interactive (www.wqed.org); and The WQED Education Department.

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WQED Pittsburgh
4802 Fifth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


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Maria Pisano
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