The family of award-winning journalist Austin Tice, who has been detained in Syria since 2012 while covering escalating conflict in the region, needs your help to urge President Joe Biden to free Austin and bring him safely home.
Tice, a writer and photographer, veteran Marine Corps captain, and Georgetown Law student, was detained three days after his 31st birthday, more than eight years ago. The U.S. government believes Austin is alive and being held by an affiliate of the Syrian government.
Please join the #FreeAustinTice campaign for his safe, swift return by encouraging your Members of Congress to send a letter to President Biden pressing him to make Austin’s safe return a top priority. To send a letter to your Members of Congress right now, click here now. You’ll find a pre-written letter ready to send to your Members of Congress, who will be listed for you. The process takes less than a minute to complete.
Every letter you and your network send to Congress will make a difference for Austin and the Tice family. The deadline for Members to act is April 12, so send them a message now.
“Austin is waiting, wanting to come home. Our family is waiting with open arms. His friends are waiting for a joyful homecoming celebration,” said Debra Tice, Austin’s mother. This August will mark Austin’s ninth year of captivity in Syria. “People across America and around the world are waiting to see Austin walk free.
“We implore President Biden: Bring Austin home to us. We’ve come close and been heartbroken by missed opportunities. Please don’t make Austin and those who love him wait a minute more.”
Austin is the oldest of seven siblings and a Houston, Texas, native. A veteran Marine Corps Captain, Austin served tours of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq after graduating from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. After his service, Austin pursued his law degree at Georgetown University Law Center. The summer before his final year of law school, Austin traveled to Syria as a freelance reporter and photographer. While reporting on the suffering of the Syrian people, he was detained at a checkpoint and remains held captive. U.S. government sources confirm he is alive.
The National Press Club Journalism Institute is supporting the Tices in this important effort, in partnership with McClatchy, Tribune Media, CNHI, and other organizations working to #FreeAustinTice. In September 2019, the Institute coordinated dozens of volunteers who canvassed the offices of every sitting member of Congress in one day, urging them to ask about Austin’s case in briefings and to urge that every diplomatic effort be made to bring him home to his family. Then, 173 of those lawmakers signed a letter to President Trump on Austin’s behalf. In September 2020, 2,638 individuals from around the U.S. joined a letter-writing campaign to Congress, urging all efforts be made to bring Austin home by Thanksgiving.
For more information, email Julie Moos, Executive Director of the National Press Club Journalism Institute.