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EU Commission: “ensure journalists’ safety”. Online threats and violence in the streets. Guarantee access to information

“As the media industry continues to adapt and evolve, so do the threats faced by media professionals when exercising their profession. Online threats are a new reality”, said EU Commissioner for the Internal Market, Thierry Breton, at the press conference on the EU Recommendation on the safety of journalists. The EU Commission urges Member States to involve Europol and Eurojust in order to improve cooperation between law enforcement and media bodies and address threats faced by journalists. “It is crucial that media have non-discriminatory access to information, including press conferences and documents held by public authorities”. Brussels also underlines the importance of strengthening training and “access to social protection for all media professionals”. One in three incidents occur during demonstrations: there is a need “to ensure that journalists and other media professionals are able to work safely and without restrictions”. Also, the Commission calls on online platforms to cooperate more in identifying threats against journalists and on authorities to provide greater support in assisting professionals, upon request, in determining whether their devices have been compromised. EU countries should protect female and minority journalists, and newsrooms should “promote equality and inclusion”. Finally, the Commission is launching a new call for proposals on investigative journalism, worth close to €4 million in EU funding.

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