Safety and Health at Work Award: What about Journalists?

Palestinian journalists are injured, kicked, punched, dragged, beaten up or left to bleed until death? Some journalists reporting from conflict zones employed by ginormous media establishments, yet they are not even provided with a crash helmet, notes Iqbal Tamimi.

DuPont announced a call for applications for the 2010 DuPont Safety Awards, an annual competition recognizing companies that have taken extraordinary steps to enhance workplace safety throughout Europe, Middle East and Africa. The awards are designed to motivate companies to reassess the role of safety within their operations, using it as a catalyst to achieve sustainability and improve their bottom line.




The Press release as expected focused on accidents and injuries in the workplace common in countries experiencing rapid industrialization, and those without effective regulatory frameworks for occupational safety and health.

The awards will be given in five categories: Sustainable Business Impact, Cultural Evolution, Visible Management Commitment, Innovative Approach and Performance Improvement and I can claim that I can read the stars and predict that no media organization in the Middle East is going to win the Award.

Only few days ago journalists lost their colleague Samaa TV cameraman Malik Arif in a suicide bombing at a Quetta hospital, five other journalists – Noor Elahi Bugti of Samaa TV, Salman Ashraf of Geo TV, Fareed Ahmed of Dunya TV, Khalil Ahmed of Express TV and Malik Sohail of Aaj TV – were injured on the 16th of April. The journalists were at the hospital to film a gathering by Shiites in support of a Shiite businessman who had been the target of a murder attempt.

Safety seems to be connected with working on buildings or chemicals producing factories. Last year 70 journalists were killed. How such companies can improve the safety for journalists. Who can eliminate such horrible painful incidents? How can such companies secure the safety of free lance journalists who do not belong to a certain cadre of an organized media establishment that cares about its reputation and image? Who can eliminate the number of times Palestinian journalists are injured, kicked, punched, dragged, beaten up or left to bleed until death? Some journalists reporting from conflict zones employed by ginormous media establishments, yet they are not even provided with a crash helmet.

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