Recently Dave Wenhold decided not to renew his contact with the National Court Reporters Association and resigned. Many big names in court reporting came up on my Facebook feed commenting about it or even asking for answers. A few days later, NCRA released this statement.
It’s our responsibility to ourselves and our profession that if we dislike the way things are going, get involved. If we want more lobbying efforts on a national level, propose them to the national association. If we want more state laws to protect reporters, propose them to state associations. Open up a dialogue and find out what it would take to get a law through. Would it take more lobbying money? Would grass roots letter writing work? Would the association be bolder if it knew more of its members wanted the same thing?
If you think your idea is too small or insignificant, consider that in or around 1961 the Attorney General of New York issued an interpretation of law which stated depositions could not be taken on Sunday. If that was worth writing about, certainly your ideas shouldn’t go unsung. Take, for example, Kevin Hunt’s idea to have people pledge to pay for Wenhold’s services. It was something that just wasn’t on the table until he put it there. We make things happen when we speak up. Many value actions over words, but often words are the first step in action. Our field, as with any field, relies on people putting out new and creative ideas. Hopefully we could all take something from Kevin’s example, or the Attorney General, and when we see something that’s a problem, put out ways to solve the problem.
Update: NCRA will not adopt Kevin Hunt’s idea. Source.