TORONTO, Nov. 23, 2022 – The Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF), in collaboration with the #NotOk campaign and the Canadian Women’s Foundation, is holding a free webcast Special Event on the virtual harm and harassment faced by women journalists on Wednesday, November 30, at 1 p.m. EST.
Participating in the panel discussion are Garvia Bailey, broadcaster and co-founder of Media Girlfriends; Christina Frangou, freelance journalist; and Saba Eitizaz, Toronto Star producer and co-host of This Matters podcast. CBC News correspondent Salimah Shivji will moderate this discussion.
Online attacks are increasingly personal, brutal, and coordinated, and carry the serious threat of offline harm. In Canada, several journalists – nearly all racialized women – were recently targeted by an escalating hate campaign through encrypted email services, threatening ‘real-world’ sexual violence and harm. The harm radiates outward from those most affected to the news and information ecosystem.
“Online harm and harassment is one of the most significant health and safety issues facing women journalists today, and is on the rise globally,” says CJF President and Executive Director, Natalie Turvey. “These attacks, aimed at women and racialized journalists, not only affect the health and well-being of the targeted journalists but ultimately undermine trust in facts and jeopardize press freedom.”
A UNESCO/ICFJ report published earlier in 2022 found online abuse to be linked to disinformation campaigns, and the silencing of journalists. In Canada, several news and media organizations have joined to confront this toxic influence.
“CBC/Radio-Canada is deeply committed to working with other media to raise awareness of this on-going and disturbing issue. Collectively, it’s critical we continue to do everything possible to protect journalists. Coming together will ultimately foster a safer, stronger media,” states Barbara Williams, Executive Vice-President English Services at CBC-Radio-Canada.
The CJF is thrilled to partner with both the #NotOk campaign and the Canadian Women’s Foundation during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.
“Pervasive gender-based violence, including acts and threats of abuse, harm diverse women, girls, and Two Spirit, trans, and non-binary people every day in Canada,” says President and CEO of the Canadian Women’s Foundation, Paulette Senior. “In the pandemic, abuse rates have risen. We need to view this targeting of women and racialized journalists as an attack on those already at high risk of abuse. And we need to pursue systemic solutions to not only intervene but also to prevent this abuse from happening in the first place.”
For a full list of speaker bios, visit the CJF J-Talksevent page.
The CJF also thanks the generosity of in-kind supporters CPAC and Cision.
Cision is the exclusive distribution partner of the CJF.
DATE: Wednesday, November 30, 2022, 1 p.m. EST. Register now
About The Canadian Journalism Foundation
Established in 1990, The Canadian Journalism Foundation promotes, celebrates and facilitates excellence in journalism. The foundation runs a prestigious annual awards and fellowships program featuring an industry gala where news leaders, journalists and corporate Canada gather to celebrate outstanding journalistic achievement and the value of professional journalism. Through monthly J-Talks, a public speakers’ series, the CJF facilitates dialogue among journalists, business people, academics and students about the role of the media in Canadian society and the ongoing challenges for media in the digital era. The foundation also fosters opportunities for journalism education, training and research.
About the #NotOk Campaign
#NotOk was initiated by CBC/Radio‑Canada, with members from across all components of the Corporation. We are united in supporting our journalists, newsrooms and media professionals against those who seek to silence their stories and threaten their safety. We believe it must be an industry-wide effort to tackle this threat and together, we will continue to advocate for collective responses to end this behaviour.
About the Canadian Women’s Foundation
The Canadian Women’s Foundation is a national leader in the movement for gender equality in Canada. Through funding, research, advocacy, and knowledge sharing, the Foundation works to achieve systemic change that includes all women. By supporting community programs, the Foundation empowers women and girls to move themselves out of violence, out of poverty, and into confidence and leadership. Launched in 1991 to address a critical need for philanthropy focused on women, the Canadian Women’s Foundation is one of the largest women’s foundations in the world. With the support of donors, the Foundation has raised more than $100 million and funded over 2,000 programs across the country. These programs focus on addressing the root causes of the most critical issues and helping women and girls who face the greatest barriers. The Canadian Women’s Foundation aims to be inclusive of diverse people across gender and sexuality spectrums. We focus our efforts on supporting those who face the most barriers and have least access to relevant services. This includes people who identify as women, girls, trans, genderqueer, non-binary, and 2SLGBTQI+.