New Times' Michael Lacey, Stephen Lemons, and Paul Rubin won first place in the 2010 Best of the West's Immigration and Minority Affairs category for the newspaper's series "Are Your Papers in Order?"
In addition, New Times' Amy Silverman won the 2010 Mental Health America Media Award in the local/regional magazine category for her three-part series "The Lost Kids."
In issuing the Best of the West award, judges wrote that the writers' stories focus "like a laser beam on the controversial law enforcement tactics of [Maricopa County] Sheriff Joe Arpaio." Calling the stories "ambitious and daring" work," the judges went on to say that they were "engaging, dynamic, and crafted with a strong, authoritative voice that only comes from meticulous and deep reporting."
The judges singled out one story by Lemons as particularly "brave" in that it reveals "the relationship between neo-Nazi and extreme right-wing organizations [and] Arpaio."
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In "The Lost Kids," Silverman reported on the failures in Arizona's mental-health system for juveniles. She wrote of a boy who has lived in Texas for several years, away from his family in Arizona, because the state has no adequate treatment facility for him here, and of a girl who died in a wilderness-therapy camp after her parents exhausted local options. Finally, Silverman reported on near-miss suicide attempts and other failures at the state's juvenile-detention facilities, where many mentally ill kids wind up.