Press Statement

India: #Ratify ILO Convention 190, IJU Urges Govt

25 Nov, 2021

Observing the International Day for the elimination of violence against women today, the Indian Journalists Union urges the Modi government to ratify International Labour Organisation Convention 190 on Violence and harassment in the world of work at the earliest.

On 10 June 2019, the ILO passed the said convention as well as a recommendation, 206. Both, according to the International Federation of Journalists, of which the IJU is a member, can bring about change in female journalists’ lives by outlawing violence in the world of work. According to IFJ statistics, almost 65% of women media workers have experienced intimidation, threats or abuse in relation to their work either offline or online.

These attacks have had chilling effects on freedom of expression, leading women journalists to self-censor and affecting their wellbeing and private life. They also have devastating consequences on pluralism and the public’s right to know, with many stories not being told by women for fear of being attacked or killed, says the IFJ.

In a statement, IJU President and Former Member of Press Council of India Geetartha Pathak and IJU Secretary General and Vice President of International Federation of Journalists Sabina Inderjit said, there is an urgency particularly to fight against online harassment. While the digital age offers a new world of opportunities, it offshoots a grave danger for women journalists, wherein online abuse is increasingly being used to harass, intimidate and silence the outspoken voices in the country. And though there are umpteen number of cases of attacks offline in the form of physical violence, legal cases and even killings, the country is witnessing orchestrated troll armies swarming their targets, largely women journalists.

The IJU said it is well-known that the form of trolling is largely sexist and misogynistic on social media adding a new and dangerous dimension to the form of violence and harassment in the world of work being faced by women journalists. This is unacceptable in any civilised society, it added, and must be brought an end to. The government, must take responsibility and expedite the ratification of the Convention.

Written By

Indian Journalists' Union Indian Journalists' Union

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