Journalism: Females

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 14th March 2019.

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Photo of Ann Clwyd Ann Clwyd Labour, Cynon Valley

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to (a) develop protection mechanisms and (b) provide emergency protection funds for female journalists at risk.

Photo of Mark Field Mark Field Minister of State

The UK is committed to the promotion of media freedom and the protection of journalists, including female journalists, who face particular challenges. We have launched a campaign to shine a global spotlight on the subject of media freedom and to increase the costs to those who target journalists for their work. We have been liaising with multilateral, bilateral and civil society partners to explore the effectiveness of the protection mechanisms and funds that already exist, and consider how we can best support and enhance these efforts. This includes consulting with our partners and with female journalists on the steps we can take to minimise the added risks faced by women working in this field and to provide increased protections for them.

We have also supported women journalists through our ongoing project work. Through the Magna Carta Fund for Human Rights and Democracy the FCO supports the promotion and protection of human rights, democracy and the rule of law by funding numerous projects overseas. This includes funding for various programmes promoting media freedom. In addition, we have supported media development training for Syrian journalists in exile through International Media Support and the Guardian Foundation. These initiatives are aimed at strengthening local capacity for investigative journalism and in support of public narratives on accountability. This support also has a focus on gender sensitive reporting and representation.

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