News & Opinion

UK will establish committee on journalist safety

Culture Secretary announces the UK will create a National Committee for the Safety of Journalists.

The announcement, made by Culture Secretary, Jeremy Wright, at an international conference on Defending Media Freedom hosted by the UK and Canadian governments, tasked the committee with creating a National Action Plan on the safety of journalists.

All governments present at the conference have been asked to create their own plans, and according to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) the UK’s will “examine current protections offered to journalists in the UK, and consider how to work together to build on existing strengths”.

Jeremy Wright said during the announcement: “With rising disinformation and threats against the media, the UK’s strong and independent press is a beacon of freedom that this Government is committed to supporting and preserving.

“The committee will champion journalists’ ability to safely carry out their important roles in society and to continue to hold the powerful to account.”

The DCMS has not confirmed who will sit on the committee but said it would include representatives from journalism organisations and government departments. It also made clear that the committee would not interfere with press freedoms, although it would be able to make recommendations to the Government.

Sam Hudson 16/07/19

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