Press freedom and the space for independent media are under threat, as stipulated in various UN resolutions addressing journalist safety. UN Sectary-General Guterres stated that ‘civic space has been shrinking worldwide at an alarming rate. And with anti-media rhetoric on the rise, so too are violence and harassment against journalists, including women … When media workers are targeted, societies as a whole pay a price.’ Governments practise legal intimidation and censorship of dissenting voices, also in the digital space. Criminal gangs threaten those who report on corruption. The result is that journalists exercise self-censorship, leave the profession, disappear into exile or stay silent. This is a deliberate attack on civic space that requires a cross-cutting approach to safety of journalists.
This Safety Resource Space is the place to find information on the safety of journalists. It includes information on Free Press Unlimited’s safety-related activities, background information on the safety of journalists, practical resources, and best practices and examples of successful projects and approaches.
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Free Press Unlimited believes that a safe work environment is a basic need for independent media. It is imperative that journalists carry out their work free from violence and free from obstruction. A commitment to safety cuts across all of Free Press Unlimited’s activities.
Free Press Unlimited believes that safety should be approached as a comprehensive concept that has physical, psycho-social, digital and legal dimensions. As these dimensions of safety impact on each other, it is important to adopt an inclusive approach, that also takes gender into account.
Evidence base: Safety of journalists
|The Return of Digital Authoritarianism: Internet Shutdowns in 2021||2022||Global||Access Now|
|Safety of Women Journalists in Bosnia-Herzegovina: Perceptions, Experience and Understanding of Safety and Gendered Safety Risks||2022||Bosnia-Herzegovina||Free Press Unlimited||Aziz, M., Josimovic, N. & Mednansky, A.|
|Equally Safe: Towards a Feminist Approach to the Safety of Journalists||2022||Global||Article 19||Robinson, J. & Yoshida, K.|
|Reset Required? Evaluatinging the Media Freedom Coalition after its first two years||2022||Global||University of East Anglia, City University of London and University of the Philippines-Diliman||Myers, M; Scott, M; Bunce, M; Yassin, L; Fernandez, M.C.; Khan, R.|
|Protection of Journalists: Safety and Justice in Latin America and the Caribbean||2022||Latin America||Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas|
|Wanted! Real Action for Media Freedom in Europe||2021||Europe||Council of Europe Platform to Promote the Protection of Journalism and Safety of Journalists||Council of Europe Platform to Promote the Protection of Journalism and Safety of Journalists|
|Threats that Silence: Trends in the Safety of Journalists||2021||Global||UNESCO||Chorbacher, T. et al.|
|Murders, Physical Assaults & Online Harassment: Silencing Journalism in Somalia. Somalia Annual Press Freedom Report 2020 – 2021||2021||Somalia||Federation of Somali Journalists (FESOJ)||Federation of Somali Journalists (FESOJ)|
|Sexual Harassment in the Media||2021||Africa||WAN-IFRA||Ireton, C.|
|Safe. Strong. Viable. The Symbosis Between Media Safety and Media Viability||2021||Burkina Faso, Lebanon, Mexico, Philippines||Deutsche Welle Akademie||Aldenrath, P. et al.|
|Investigating the killing of journalist Regina Martínez Pérez||2021||Mexico||Free Press Unlimited||A Safer World For The Truth|
|Investigating the killing of journalist Zubair Mujahid||2021||Pakistan||Free Press Unlimited||A Safer World For The Truth|