LA Times Reporter Admonishes Critical, Full-Page Ad

A nonprofit group criticized in an investigative piece in the Los Angeles Times took out an extraordinary full-page ad on Wednesday to refute allegations about elevator problems in a Skid Row residential building run by the organization.

The Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation ran the ad in Wednesday’s print edition of the Times, saying it was a response to a story published by the LA Times on Friday.

Liam Dillon, who shared a three-way byline Friday on a 2,300-word story about elevator problems in a Skid Row residential building run by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, said in a series of tweets the reporters’ efforts to give the nonprofit a voice in the piece were above board — “to ensure that their perspective was represented.”

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“We take the extraordinary step of running this letter as an ad because the Times will not tell our story fairly,” the advertisement’s copy began, before listing several of the nonprofit’s notable accomplishments.

Dillon’s tweets paint a different picture, however. Dillon, who covers housing affordability and neighborhood change in California for the Times, said their efforts included reaching out and contacting the foundation for an interview, which it declined. The reporters then followed up again two days before the story was published.

The Los Angeles Times did not immediately respond to a request by TheWrap for comment on this story.

“We first contacted AHF requesting an interview on Jan. 4 — more than two weeks before the story published,” Dillon wrote. “They declined our request, saying it was unethical to comment because the trial might begin soon.”

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Included in the story were details of a lawsuit against the foundation filed by tenants of the building with elevator problems.

“Following the story’s publication, AHF has not contacted us — and nor has anyone else — requesting any correction or clarification or suggesting there were errors in the piece,” Dillon said.

Read the complete thread of Dillon’s take below.

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