Safety of journalists

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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Credit: Free Press Unlimited/Joris Bulckens

Introduction to safety

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.

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Credit: Marloes van 't Pad Bosch

Dimensions of safety

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.

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Credit: Free Press Unlimited/Joris Bulckens

Four pillars of safety

Free Press Unlimited directs its efforts to address safety along four different pillars, being support to journalists in distress, capacity development, tools and resources, and advocacy and campaigning.

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Credit: Romy van den Boogaart

International instruments

Free Press Unlimited’s work on the safety of journalists builds upon a number of key international instruments, which reflect international commitments to further the safety of journalists.

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Credit: Sandro Weltin

Networks and coalitions

Free Press Unlimited works together with other like-minded organisations in a number of international networks and coalitions in order to contribute towards journalist safety, both locally and internationally.

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Evidence base: Safety of journalists

Found 87 Results | Page 6 of 8
Source Year Country Organisation Author
Fear, Trauma and Local Journalists: Cross-border Lessons in Psychosocial Support for Journalists 2019 Latin America, MENA, South and Southeast Asia International Media Support (IMS) Bets, M. & Beighly, P.
Intensified Attacks, New Defences: Developments in the Fight to Protect Journalists and End Impunity 2019 Global UNESCO McCabe, S. (Ed.)
Hostile Bytes; A study of online violence against women journalists 2019 Pakistan Media Matters for Democracy Kamran, H.
Help desk improves the safety of journalists in Nepal 2018 Nepal Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
Internal Evaluation Somalia Country Programme (Pilot) 2018 Somalia Free Press Unlimited Pavicic, M.
Daphne Caruana Galizia: Malta’s ‘one-woman WikiLeaks’ 2018 Malta Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
The murder of Ján Kuciak and freedom of the press in Slovakia 2018 Slovakia Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
Online Safety for Female Journalists in Pakistan 2018 Pakistan Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
Post-ISIS Iraq through the lens of Ahmed Najm 2018 Iraq Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
Media4Democracy – Developing Technical Assistance Packages for EU Delegations 2018 Global Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
Gender-based violence against female journalists: A ‘double attack’ 2018 El Salvador Free Press Unlimited Free Press Unlimited
Righting Gender Wrongs: A Study of Law Enforcement Responses to Online Violence Against Women 2018 India IT for Change IT for Change