US Politics

Reporter praised for her ‘humanity’ as she cries through COVID-19 report

CNN reporter Sara Sidner breaks down on live television. Source: CNN/Twitter

A US journalist struggled to stifle her tears on live television as she was overcome with the dire impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Black and Latino families.

CNN reporter, Sara Sidner, has been met with an outpouring of support after a video of her choking up during an emotional COVID-19 report went viral on social media.

In a live cross on Wednesday, Sara Sidner highlighted how the COVID-19 pandemic is disproportionately affecting the Black and Latino community in the United States.

Ms Sidner interviewed one Californian woman whose mother and stepfather died from COVID-19 just 11 days apart. 

Unable to hold back her tears, Ms Sidner spoke about how the woman’s family was forced to hold a funeral for their loved ones in a car park.

The woman told Sidner that “all” of her family members had contracted the virus.

"It's just not OK. It's not OK what we're doing to each other. These families should not be going through this. No family should be going through this," Ms Sidner said. 

As she cried, Ms Sidner apologised for losing her composure but was comforted by the CNN anchor, Alisyn Camerota.

"No apology needed," Ms Camerota said. 

"We've been watching your reporting on the ground. Throughout this horrific year, and we have all been struck by the grief,” she continued.

"Sara, we all appreciate the heart that you bring to this every single day as well as your excellent reporting."

Ms Sidner later took to Twitter to admit the report was not her “proudest moment as a reporter. But I could not hold this back.”

According to CNN, Ms Sidner has been on the frontline of the COVID-19 crisis, reporting from 10 different hospitals during the pandemic.

The raw emotion of her live-cross highlighted just how grim the situation has become, particularly considering Ms Sidner, a highly experienced journalist, has reported on the 2011 Libyan civil war and the Mumbai terrorist attacks.

As the video of her live cross became viral, Ms Sidner has been celebrated for her “humanity” and “empathy”.

“Your CoVid reporting from California has been nothing short of spectacular, one person wrote on Twitter.

“My folks live in California, they're 84, and I'm terrified for them every day.  The tears, including your own, are totally justified.”

Another person added, “you have one of the MOST compassionate hearts in journalism. And I wept with you this morning because we, as viewers, can’t begin to imagine the weight upon you and your fellow journalists to bring us the news.”

While one person wrote beside crying emojis, “CNN's Sara Sidner is all of us right now.”

“Seeing a reporter break down in tears on live TV after witnessing & airing such heartbreaking stories should let everyone know how serious this pandemic is,” they added.

The US has reported more than 22 million cases of COVID-19 worldwide - the highest number in the world. 

More than 375,000 people in the US have died from the virus.