Workplace Report December 2021

Health & safety news

Third of women journalists feel unsafe

Over a third of women respondents do not feel safe operating as a journalist in the UK, according to the findings of a Home Office and DCMS digital, culture, media and sport department call for evidence. It also found that more than four in five journalists experienced threats, abuse or violence as a result of their work. Incidents included death threats, bullying, sexism, racism and homophobia.

The call for evidence on journalist safety received 360 responses. These highlighted social media as making them more accessible and at risk, and reported that a growing number of protestors and activists now target media and film crews. The majority of respondents did not report all incidents to platforms, police and employers, in part because they did not think they would be taken seriously. One in five saw receiving threats, abuse or violence as part of their job.

NUJ journalists’ union general secretary Michelle Stanistreet called for a cultural change to stop the abuse from being normalised. She made clear it is not, and must not be allowed to become, part of a journalist’s job. She called for a zero-tolerance approach with greater reporting, better policing and robust sentencing.