Your Voice

While our writers come from a variety of backgrounds, the share one thing in common – having an opinion that they want to share. The articles that we curate may have been published before as letters to the editor (LTE), opinion editorials (Op Eds), or as part of a writer’s personal blog or Facebook post. Some writings have never been published, the author giving us the honor of publishing it for the first time.

We ensure that all the writing here are the author’s Truth, written in a civil manner, and published here to promote the discovery of different points of view and facilitate discussion. We hope that as you read the voices of fellow Lancastrians – your neighbors whether they live next door or in the next town – that you take some time to digest their words and determine where you are on a 1 to 10 scale where 1 means “totally disagree” and 10 means “totally agree”.

If you would like to write an opinion piece for us – whether it’s a response to an article we’ve published, a response to a local happening, an idea or inspiration, or just something you’ve been thinking about – review our criteria below then contact us. We welcome writing from anyone in the Lancaster, PA and surrounding areas who wants to SPEAK up!

Criteria for having YOUR VOICE be heard on the Lancaster SPEAKS Up Website:

  1. The writing must be yours – your opinion, your idea, your thoughts.
  2. The writing cannot disparage or be a rant about
    • a specific person – including the author of another opinion piece
    • a specific group of people based on their identity such as women, GLBTQ+, differently abled people, Black/African Americans, White/European Americans, Latinos/Latino Americans, Asians/Asian Americans to name a few)
    • a specific group of people based on their profession such as police officers, politicians, veterans/military.
    • This means that you can write an article about policing behaviors that targets communities of color but we will not accept an article ranting about the local police department. Articles focusing on behaviors and systems are always welcome.
  3. If you include research or refer to other articles, please include that information. If you are writing about a particular event, please include information about that event. Links are always appreciated.
  4. We will ask you for a short bio that must include your name. If you prefer to use a pseudonym (such as first name only or initials only), you may indicate that, however, we will not publish articles by Anonymous.
  5. There is not a length maximum, however if your article is especially long, we may divide it into different parts and publish those parts separately (with links to each part).
  6. We are a non-paying venue.
  7. Authors retain all the rights to their work. Concurrent submissions to our site and elsewhere are approved as long as you let us know.
    • We ask that if your writing was first published here and then subsequently published elsewhere, that you credit our site as first publishers.
    • If the work has been published elsewhere, but you retain the rights to that work, we will gladly acknowledge the prior publisher.

“Speaking up is important. Yet to speak up without listening is like banging pots and pans together: Even if it gets you attention, it’s not going to get you respect.” 

Gina Barreca
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