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Journalists trained on child reporting

September 19, 2016 By Hawa Amara

Initiative for Medial Development (IMD)last week concluded a two-day training on ethical reporting of issues relating to children for more than 20 print and electronic journalists.

Executive Director of IMD, Yeama Thompson, who also served as facilitator, said the training was geared towards building the capacity of journalists in reporting matters relating to children.

She disclosed that her organisation would train 130 journalists nationwide in a bid to capacitate them on child reporting.

“The key objectives of the training are to improve on the quality of child related reporting in local media content and to enhance journalists with an in-depth knowledge of victim reporting, with experiences of its trends in other affected countries,” she noted.

She urged journalists to be critical about government policies relating children.

She informed trainees that the International Federation of Journalists craves that media organisations maintain the highest standards of ethical conduct in reporting children’s affairs, and implored journalists to verify the credentials of any group purporting to speak in the interest of children.

She maintained that journalists should give children right of access to the media in order to express their opinion without inducement of any kind.

She advised journalists to take special care in ensuring the independent verification of information provided by children without putting them at risk.

Whiles dilating on the principles and guidelines on reporting children, Communication Officer at the United Nations Children’s Fund, Issa Davies said reporters must always learn to protect children from harm and stigmatisation in their reportage.

“The dignity and rights of every child must be respected in any circumstance. When interviewing a child, journalists should not stigmatise the child and should avoid descriptions that might lead to reprisal, abuse, physical and psychological harm to the child,” he said.

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