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CIVICUS World Assembly: Media not reporting climate justice

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Update: 11:28AM MEDIA organisations around the world came under fire this morning for under reporting climate justice as the 2017 CIVICUS World Assembly sat in Suva this morning.

The world assembly is the culmination of the week long International Civil Society Week which is taking place for the first time in the Pacific this week.

At a panel of leaders of organisations discussing Climate Justice in the 21st century, Joanna Kerr of Greenpeace Canada said there was just not enough stories in mainstream media about the struggle to include climate induced migration in global talks about migration.

The United Nations Global Compact on Migration will be finalised in New York in February and CSO delegates present at ICSW this week have this week drafted a global declaration pushing for climate induced migration to be included in the UN talks.

The Global Compact on Migration is expected to be the first comprehensive document guiding better treatment of refugees.

In response, Sharon Bhagwan-Rolls called on CSOs to remember that media is not restricted only to mainstream media but also includes community media.

Ms Bhagwan-Rolls is the head of FemLink Pacific, an NGO which has pioneered community media in the country with their own radio stations.

"We have got to be clear that when we talk about the media we also are talking about community media. It starts with those voices because unless they are heard, how do you generate the bigger content," Ms Bhagwan-Rolls said.

Calling on CSOs themselves to 'change the narrative',  Ms Bhagwan-Rolls shared her own experience with global media monitoring which birthed the idea of creating space for more womens representation in the news.

She said it was up to CSOs to make the community linkages to national decisions to in order to create coverage which would make the shift from just simply reporting on an issue but to how it affects communities.

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