On June 9, 2021, grantee Cheryl Diaz Meyer was honored with a Gracie Award for her story “Reconciling History: The Ordeal of One Last Surviving ‘Sex Slave,’ of Wartime Philippines” Meyer won in the category Investigative Feature (radio — nationally syndicated non-commercial).
The reporting was part of a larger project at the Pulitzer Center, Lolas: Survivors of Enslavement, focusing on Japan and the Philippines. Meyer tells the painful and important stories of WWII “comfort women,” Filipinas who were taken by Japanese soldiers and forced into sexual slavery, enduring repeated abuse.
Meyer, along with NPR colleague Julie McCarthy, interviews some of the few remaining survivors and discusses the trauma these women still live with today. Meyer and McCarthy touch on Japan’s attempts to reconcile with this part of its troubled past, and efforts to raise awareness of this history. Her Pulitzer Center story on “comfort women” during WWII aired on National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition Sunday.
The Gracie Awards are presented by the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation, and this is their 46th annual awards. The awards are presented to women doing outstanding journalism in television, digital media, and radio. Read more about the awards here.