INDEPENDENT NEWS

Launch Of Right To Know Campaign Hailed

Published: Sat 12 May 2007 12:53 AM
Launch Of Right To Know Campaign Hailed
PARIS (RSF/Pacific Media Watch): Reporters Without Borders hailed a campaign called Australia's Right to Know that was launched today by a coalition of leading Australian news media including News Ltd, Fairfax, ABC and SBS with the aim of combatting the erosion of press freedom resulting from the country's legislation.
At a news conference to launch the campaign, News Ltd chairman John Hartigan cited the Reporters Without Borders and Freedom House press freedom indexes, which put Australia far behind such countries as New Zealand and Canada.
"As Australians we like to see ourselves as free people," Hartigan said. "Regrettably, we see that the right to speak and say has been under significant threat over very many years. We find that a lot of Australians aren't being given the information to make informed decisions."
According to Australia's Right to Know, access to information is restricted by more than 500 legal provisions.
As examples, Hartigan said News Ltd journalists were recently denied access to information contained in an audit of politicians' expenses, a list of restaurants sanctioned by the health authorities, and a ranking of hospitals according to the quality of their medical care.
Fairfax chief executive David Kirk said the Australian media had united in support of the campaign in an exemplary manner.
Reporters Without Borders said: "We appeal to the federal and provincial authorities to respond to the media's concerns as quickly as possible and to relax the laws and regulations limiting press freedom and the right to information in Australia."
The Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom Index ranked Australia 35th out of 168 countries.
ends

Next in World

Gordon Campbell on the Hong Kong protest movement
By: Gordon Campbell
The Pacific will no longer stand for Australia's inaction
By: The Conversation
July 29: Earth Overshoot Day 2019 is the Earliest Ever
By: WWF
More Manus Refugees Fly to US But Hundreds Still in Limbo
By: Refugee Action Coalition
Australian PM's attitude 'neo-colonial' says Tuvalu
By: RNZ
Condescension and Climate Change
By: Binoy Kampmark
Denying Climate Change and Boosting China’s Threat
By: Binoy Kampmark
NZ boosts support for climate action across the Pacific
By: New Zealand Government
Prime Minister to attend Pacific Islands Forum
By: New Zealand Government
PM Ardern to tackle climate change conversation in Tuvalu
By: RNZ
Ardern must meet Pacific calls
By: Oxfam
Pacific Pawa Shift Builds Momentum to Climate Action Summit
By: 350.org
Ardern urged to support West Papua at Pacific Islands Forum
By: West Papua Action Auckland
1.4 million refugees set to need urgent resettlement in 2020
By: UN News
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media