UNESCO and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) organized last month two rounds of three-day trainings, focusing on journalists’ safety in the field and in the cyberspace, as well as on psychological management, for 24 Tunisian journalists, 19 of whom were women.
The trainings, which took place from 16 to 21 December 2013, emphasized the participation of female journalists, especially those who cover news and events in the field. The objective of this activity was to raise awareness on security challenges and to offer the trainees the tools to manage operational risks, to protect themselves against incidents while reporting, to optimize the safety of their communications and digital data, as well as to better manage stress, verbal or physical violence and the eventual resulting psychological traumas.
“This training was very useful for journalists and especially for photographers like me,” said Ons Abid, a young freelance journalist who works for Jeune Afrique magazine. “The trainer insisted on the importance of being able to manage, from a security point of view, clashes and violent demonstrations as well as IT security in a world that increasingly uses new technologies and social media.”
Ines Rabeb, a journalist working for Express FM radio, added: “I am used to covering demonstrations and this training really taught me about the necessary measures needed to better protect myself.”
This project is in line with previous work already undertaken by UNESCO since the 14 January 2011 Revolution. It aims to improve the safety of journalists working in Tunisia, especially female journalists, as well as to promote freedom of expression to support the democratization process taking place in Tunisia.
These trainings were made possible through the support of Finland and Sweden.