Support centres

NGOs, unions and firms providing media and journalism professionals with legal, financial and advocacy support, protection and training opportunities, and other tools

ECPMF Alarm Centre for Female Journalists under Threat

On 8 March 2016, the ECPMF has created a special Women’s Reporting Point to address and raise awareness on increasing threats against female journalists.

Threats can be reported via encrypted messaging. The secure emails will only be opened by female staff at ECPMF headquarters and their contents will remain confidential. To provide appropriate legal assistance and solidarity to female journalists or media workers who report their cases, ECPMF is partnering with the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and its Italian branch FNSI.

The rationale of this support measure stems from the consideration that female journalists are not only attacked because of their profession, they are also threatened because they are women, as pointed out also by the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media. Gender-based threats, such as sexual and abusive comments, threats of rape or publishing pictures and phone numbers on sex and dating websites target women more often than men.

ECPMF encourages all women to report attacks in order to seek help, but also to make the dimension of attacks against journalists visible: the reported cases will be collected in a database – with details of the woman’s identity removed in order to protect her – as basis of an analysis to show the scale of the problem across Europe.

read more Advocacy Safety of journalists Gender issues

Estonian Union of Journalists

The Estonian Union of Journalists (Eesti Ajakirjanike Liit, EAL) was first established in 1919; it represents the journalism and media professionals active in Estonia. The union provides members with defense of economic interests and various forms of legal and professional support, as well as with training and scholarship opportunities. It is also active in monitoring and advocating legislative changes in the country. The union can be contacted at eal@eal.ee or at +372 646 3699.

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EU Human Rights Defenders Relocation Platform

We are a global platform of national, regional and international organizations involved in programmes for the temporary relocation of human rights defenders at risk. Our activities are diverse and include identifying HRDs in need of relocation through our close work with them, providing temporary shelter within the same country, hosting HRDs in countries in their region or outside it, providing services or capacity-building opportunities to relocated HRDs, and contributing to the protection of HRDs on the ground.
Our website is a portal for members of the platform, as well as a source of information for actors interested in knowing more about HRDs, temporary relocation, and getting involved involved in temporary relocation programmes.
An initiative of the European Commission, the development and coordination of the platform is currently in the hands of ProtectDefenders.eu, the European Union Human Rights Defenders mechanism.

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European Center for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF)

ECPMF offers several support programmes for journalists at risk.

- Journalists-in-Residence programme: The ECPMF’s Journalists-in-Residence (JiR) programme offers temporary shelter for journalists facing harassment and intimidation as a direct result of their work. Journalists get the chance to rest and recuperate in a safe and discreet place, and also to continue their investigative work at their own pace and use their time in Leipzig for networking and finding solidarity. The JiR programme lasts for either three or up to six months, and includes a rent-free furnished apartment in Leipzig, as well as a monthly stipend to cover basic living costs. It also covers travel and visa expenses, health insurance, psychological counselling, and journalism-related training sessions on topics like digital security, mobile reporting and social media management. More info here .

- Legal support: ECPMF offers and coordinates legal support on matters related to free speech for individuals and organisations working in countries located geographically in Europe. More info here .

- Helpdesk: he Helpdesk is ECPMF central tool for responding to the individual needs of journalists at risk and under threat. ECPMF supports media professionals across Europe in order to find a place of safety in emergency cases and we assist exiled journalists in Germany, irrespective of their origin. More info here .

- Women’s Reporting Point: it aims to deepen a gender-specific aspect of the safety of journalists and encourages female media workers to report it if they are subjected to harassment or they witness it in their journalistic work. Reports received are given priority, treated confidentially and are only handled by women staff. More info here .

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European Federation of Journalists

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is the largest organization for journalists in Europe, representing over 320,000 journalists in 68 journalists’ organisations across 42 countries. EFJ has its headquarters in Brussel.

EFJ offers free legal, financial and advocacy support to staff journalists, editors, media outlets, freelance journalists, media outlets, and journalist associations.

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Federación de Sindicatos de Periodistas

Federación de Sindicatos de Periodistas is a Spanish journalists association. It offers legal and advocacy support to Spanish staff and freelance journalists, editors, media outlets, and civic media/bloggers. For associated members the service is free, while for non-members fixed rates are applied. The person to be contacted is Manuel Mediavilla (manumediavilla@gmail.com or +34 934 127 763).

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Free media help line Bosnia Herzegovina - Linija za pomoć novinarima Bosnia Hercegovina

Free Media Help Line is part of the Journalists' Association of Bosnia Herzegovina, and functions as a local institution for the support and assistance to journalists in the implementation of their work, and for the protection of journalists rights and freedoms. Free Media Help Line encourages all journalists to report every threats or any interference in the exercise of journalistic duties.

read more Practical support Safety of journalists SLAPP

Free Press Unlimited (FPU)

Free Press Unlimited is a foundation based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, which supports local journalists in war zones and conflict areas in over 43 countries.

The organization offers several support programmes for journalists at risk:

  1. Emergency support: Journalists and media organisations in distress can apply for emergency support from Reporters Respond. Through this fund, Free Press Unlimited enables them to resume their work as quickly as possible when faced with obstruction, vandalism, or intimidations. More info here .
  2. Legal support: With the Legal Defense Fund, Free Press Unlimited provides financial support to journalists and media organisations worldwide, giving support to journalists who face prosecution or imprisonment and who are unable to afford a lawyer or trial costs. More info here .
  3. Safety trainings & tools: In collaboration with international partners, Free Press Unlimited supports (media) organisations and media workers with safety training. More info here .
  4. Advocacy: Independent media and press freedom cannot exist if safety for journalists isn’t guaranteed. Therefore, Free Press Unlimited actively lobbies for a safe work environment for journalists. An environment which enables them to work free of fear and danger. More info here .

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Front Line Defenders

Front Line Defenders provides rapid and practical support to human rights defenders at risk through:

  • international advocacy on behalf of human rights defenders at risk, including emergency support for those in immediate danger (see here );
  • grants to pay for the practical security needs of human rights defenders (see here );
  • trainings and resource materials on security and protection, including digital security (see here );
  • rest, respite and other opportunities for human rights defenders dealing with extreme stress (see here );
  • opportunities for networking and exchange between human rights defenders, including at the biennial Dublin Platform (see here );
  • the annual Front Line Defenders Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk;
  • an emergency 24-hour phone line for human rights defenders operating in Arabic, English, French, Russian and Spanish.

In emergency situations Front Line Defenders can facilitate temporary relocation of human rights defenders.

Front Line Defenders is a member of the Journalists in Distress (JID) Network.

Contact information (here ): Emergency Hotline +353 121 00489 - SKYPE: front-line-emergency

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GIJN Guide: Resources for Women Journalists

Women journalists often face unique challenges while doing their jobs. The Global Investigative Journalism Network GIJN has gathered resources to help our female colleagues around the world find networks, resources and tools to handle issues such as online harassment, workplace discrimination and gender-based violence, as well as easily locate opportunities and support designed specifically for women journalists.

The topics:

Networks (international and regional), Safety, Discrimination & Harassment, Mentors, Grants & Fellowships, Awards, Female Experts, Investigative Journalism

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