TORONTO, Sept. 19, 2011 /CNW/ - A new opportunity for Canadian
freelancers to apply for financial help to attend hazardous environment
safety training courses in the US or Britain was announced today by the
Canadian Journalism Forum on Violence and Trauma.
The Forum Freelance Fund will provide bursaries up to $2,500 to cover
approximately 70% of course and travel costs. Applications will be
considered and awards made by an independent jury.
"Responsible employers already send their own staff on these courses
when they are likely to be placed in harm's way," said Forum president
Cliff Lonsdale, "but freelancers are mostly left to fend for
themselves. With the news industry relying ever more heavily on
freelancers in dangerous situations at home and abroad, there's a
significant safety gap that needs to be addressed. The Forum Freelance
Fund is a step in that direction."
The principle of collective responsibility for freelance safety, which
underpins this initiative, has been formally endorsed by RTDNA Canada -
The Association of Electronic Journalists, and by Canadian Journalists
for Free Expression. Support has also been expressed by the
International News Safety Institute and by Reporters without Borders
The Forum Freelance Fund is sponsored by CBC News and supported by Radio-Canada, Canada News Wire and individual donations. Other sponsors and financial supporters are
being sought, so that the program can be extended.
"We are particularly grateful to CBC News for making a three-year
commitment to the program," Lonsdale said. Initially, two training
places will be offered. The first application deadline is Monday,
Approved safety courses bursary recipients may choose include those
offered by Andrew Kain Enterprises Limited, Centurion Risk Assessment
Services Ltd. and Columbia Journalism School.
Canadian freelancers are defined as those with Canadian citizenship or
residence and others who work abroad substantially for Canadian media.
Further details of the Forum Freelance Fund are available on the
Forum's website: http://journalismforum.fims.uwo.ca.
The Canadian Journalism Forum on Violence and Trauma is an educational
charitable organization that promotes the physical and emotional safety
of journalists in Canada and abroad. It also address the impact of
coverage on people caught up in violent and traumatic stories as well
as the effects that covering violence and trauma may have on news
SOURCE Canadian Journalism Forum on Violence and Trauma
For further information:
Jane Hawkes, Executive Producer, CJVFT: 519-473-6434 / firstname.lastname@example.org