March 18, 2009 / 8:59 PM / 9 years ago

Shows honored for "television with conscience"

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Television can be good for you, after all.

Star of the ABC show "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" Ty Pennington arrives to attend the ABC Network upfronts in New York May 15, 2007. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

The TV show “Extreme Makeover Home Edition”, the drama “Brothers and Sisters” and the 2008 “Stand Up to Cancer” charity fund-raiser were among eight programs named on Wednesday for exemplifying “television with a conscience.”

The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences said the eight programs singled out by its Television Honors Committee made a significant impact on issues ranging from racial integration to adoption, tolerance and the environment.

The ABC show “Extreme Makeover Home Edition” was cited for an episode about the Martirez and Malek families who care for terminally ill people and the disabled.

Last year’s season finale of “Brothers and Sisters” was chosen for its fictional portrayal of the complex family emotions over gay marriage, while the September 2008 “Stand Up to Cancer” commercial free special was commended for its uplifting update on cancer treatments.

The programs were chosen from almost 150 submissions and had one thing in common. “They used the power of television to enlighten, educate, create awareness and instigate positive change,” John Shaffner, chairman of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Selected by the same group that hands out television’s Emmy awards, the Television Academy Honors will be presented in Beverly Hills on April 30.

Also honored were the PBS play “God on Trial”, the life-swap FX reality show “30 Days”, the HBO documentary “Breaking the Huddle” about the impact of college football on the civil rights movement, Animal Planet series “Whale Wars” and the CBS annual special “A Home for the Holidays” which focuses on adoption.

Reporting by Jill Serjeant; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte

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