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SPJ condemns mistreatment of journalists this election season


Paul Fletcher, SPJ National President, 804-873-1893, pfletcher.spj@gmail.com
Jennifer Royer, SPJ Communications Strategist, 317-361-4134, jroyer@spj.org

INDIANAPOLIS – The following statement may be attributed to SPJ National President Paul Fletcher regarding the political climate and mistreatment of journalists during this presidential campaign.

“The Society of Professional Journalists strongly supports the numerous journalists and news outlets which have been blocked, bullied and harassed during this election season.

“Journalists covering a political campaign perform an important public service – they provide information to the American public seeking to determine our next leaders. Journalists must be free to do their jobs without fear of reprisal, intimidation and threat of physical harm.

“Candidates for the office of president of the United States and all other offices must understand and respect the role of a free press, and must expect to be asked uncomfortable questions and receive tough but fair coverage. Journalists ask questions on behalf of all Americans who have the right to know the policies, positions and background of any person they are voting into the country’s highest office or other offices.

“For a candidate to disown the principles of the First Amendment simply because they do not like their coverage is shameful.”

SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press. Support excellent journalism and fight for your right to know. Become a member, give to the Legal Defense Fund, or give to the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation.

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