Skopje, 20 March 2018 – A Declaration for Ethical and Professional Reporting on LGBTI-related Issues was launched today, as part of the efforts to ensure professional reporting on the LGBTI community and observance of the rights of the members of this community without using discriminatory or derogatory speech. The signing of the document was initiated by the ‘Sexual and Health Rights of Marginalized Communities’ Coalition, the Council of Media Ethics, the Association of Journalists of the Republic of Macedonia and the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services.
As a formal act, the Declaration is expected to contribute to preventing speech that stigmatizes this group in the media and promote sexual and gender diversity, including protection of the rights of the LGBTI community. The principles the Declaration promotes urge the media to restrain from and condemn hate speech based on sexual orientation, gender identity or belonging to a traditionally and socially marginalized group. Non-partial reporting on the activities of the LGBTI community and human rights activists, increased cooperation with the civil society organizations advocating LGBTI rights, as well as an exchange of relevant information, will all provide an integral and realistic insight into the problems affecting the LGBTI community.
So far, the Declaration has been signed by the Print Media Association, the Association of Electronic Media – Medium OBJECTIV, and about 20 other media outlets, which have bound themselves within their responsibilities and competences to remain committed to the principles laid down in the Declaration. The call to sign the Declaration applies to all media and stakeholders who can engage in and contribute to building a society with equal access to justice for all.