Reporters Respond: emergency & legal support
Around the world, journalism faces increasing and unprecedented levels of repression, violence, intimidation, and judicial harassment. If journalists are being attacked and silenced, the media cannot provide their audiences with the independent and reliable news that people need in order to stay informed and thrive.
Journalists must be able to continue to do their work. This is why Free Press Unlimited offers support to media professionals in distress with emergency assistance, legal support, and safety advice through Reporters Respond.
Apply for support here or continue reading for more information.
Information in other languages:
What is Reporters Respond?
Reporters Respond is an emergency response fund that provides direct assistance, legal support, and safety advice to journalists and media outlets in distress, enabling them to resume their work as quickly as possible. This fund can support journalists and media organisations worldwide who are confronted with (online) harassment, intimidation, legal proceedings, or violence because of their work.
What type of support is offered?
Media professionals and organisations in distress can apply for support from Reporters Respond. This is what we can offer:
Medical assistance: for injuries sustained in the course of the journalists work;
Subsistence costs: short term support for journalists who are not able to work, or costs to temporarily flee an unsafe or vulnerable situation;
Legal defense support: legal representation for journalists facing prosecution, disputable lawsuits, or any other form of legal intimidation related to their work; cover the costs of judicial proceedings; assist media workers that have been arbitrarily detained or imprisoned (and their families);
Psycho-social support: advice, referral, and funds to seek psychosocial assistance;
Work provisions: replacement of confiscated or destroyed equipment due to a work-related emergency;
Family support: temporary support for family members of journalists who are unable to work, who are imprisoned, or who are deceased;
(Preventive) safety measures: security advice, digital tools such as VPNs for digital protection, PPE protection materials like face masks, and safety equipment like ballistic vests.
Digital security is essential for journalists and activists to protect themselves and to keep doing their work. Totem is an online learning platform run by Free Press Unlimited, Greenhost and Media Development Collective that offers free online courses on digital security. Totem now has 24 unique short courses in 7 languages available on the platform for anyone interested. The course topics range from “How to secure your devices” to “How to protect your identity online”, they can be accessed anywhere, and have been carefully designed to be self-paced, mobile-friendly and safe.
Requirements for support
The following requirements need to be met in order to apply for assistance:
You represent a media organisation or you are a media professional practicing individually (i.e. employed or freelance journalists, fixers, bloggers, or other media-related professionals);
Your emergency situation is a direct result of your work in journalism;
You recognise that this assistance is not structural;
You recognise that the aim of our support is to resume your work as soon as possible;
Your situation can be confirmed by at least two trusted sources outside of yourself.
How do I apply to Reporters Respond?
Are you a journalist in distress?
For additional questions you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. The fund will do the utmost to provide the support as soon as possible. In the most urgent cases, support can be offered within 24 hours.
Photo: Younes Mohammad.