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OPINION: Hey Media, It's the Province of Newfoundland AND Labrador.

In the last couple of days, there has been a concerning trend of overlooking the full name of Canada's easternmost province, Newfoundland and Labrador. This oversight not only diminishes the historical significance of the province but also undermines the distinct identity and contributions of Labrador.

The recent incident involves CNN's Anderson Cooper, who is currently on assignment in St. John's Newfoundland and Labrador where he is covering the Titanic-touring submersible that went missing on Sunday and suffered a “catastrophic implosion,” killing all five people on board while descending to explore the wreckage of the historic voyage liner.

Cooper's location graphics referred only to Newfoundland.

Now can you imagine referring state of New York, as just as the state of 'New'. Such a statement would rightly raise eyebrows and elicit confusion, as it fails to acknowledge the complete name. Similarly, Imagine calling the province of British Columbia just the province of British. The same principle applies to Newfoundland and Labrador.

While Newfoundland and Labrador joined the Canadian Confederation in 1949 as the Province of Newfoundland, it is important to note that the province's name was officially changed to "Newfoundland and Labrador" in, 2001, through a constitutional amendment. This change reflects the historical, cultural, and geographical significance of both Newfoundland and the mainland portion of the province, Labrador.

The capital city of Newfoundland and Labrador, St. John's, is situated on the Island of Newfoundland. However, it is crucial to recognize that St. John's is not just part of the province of Newfoundland but also represents the province of Newfoundland and Labrador as a whole. By neglecting the inclusion of Labrador in the name, we inadvertently disregard the unique identity and contributions of this vast region.

The incident involving Anderson Cooper is just one example of the widespread oversight regarding the province's name. However, it is also an opportunity for us to reflect on the importance of accuracy and respect in our portrayal of geographical locations. Media outlets, public figures, and individuals should be more conscientious about referring to the province using its correct and complete name, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Now I'll be the first to admit that I recently sat down with a councillor from the province of Newfoundland and Labrador and did what most news outlets do, just used Newfoundland in my opening introduction. I was quickly corrected, and rightly so. It was my oversight.

Beyond the issue of accuracy, recognizing the full name of Newfoundland and Labrador is a matter of respect for its residents and history. The people of Labrador, who have their distinct cultural heritage, have long felt their contributions and identity overshadowed by the emphasis on Newfoundland alone. By acknowledging the province's full name, we demonstrate an understanding and appreciation of the diverse communities that comprise Newfoundland and Labrador.

To rectify this oversight, media organizations should make it a priority to accurately represent the province's name in their reporting.

Referring to the province of Newfoundland and Labrador by its proper name is not merely a matter of semantics. It is a reflection of our commitment to accuracy, respect, and recognition of the province's distinct identity. Media outlets must move beyond the outdated habit of referring solely to Newfoundland and embrace the true provincial name of Newfoundland and Labrador.

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