CPU course- Social Responsibility and News Sense

Date: Jan 15-19, 2007
Venue: Express training room, Independence Square
Over the years many Commmonwealth member countries have incorporated ethnic and religious minorities into their societies. These groups are now an established part of society and have been
a key factor in enhancing cultural diversity. In some countries they
represent sizeable proportions of the populations and cannot be regarded as minorities. However, the concerns and issues of the various ethnic/religious groups have not always been handled
appropriately in the press, which in some cases has contributing to inflaming tensions
rather than reporting responsibly and even-handedly.
It is important that all groups feel a sense of inclusiveness and that their concerns are appropriately addressed, understood and respected by others. The goal of this project is to contribute to peace,
democracy, good governance and the rule of law through the promotion of responsible
journalism in dealing with cross-cultural issues.

The objective of this course is to ensure that journalists in selected Commonwealth countries are equipped with the appropriate knowledge and understanding to report with sensitivity and responsibility on issues that cut across cultural,ethnic or religious divides, avoiding stereotypes, cliches and inflammatory language. It will emphasise the importance of gaining a deeper understanding of the fundamental characteristics of various religions and cultures, so as to avoid rudimentary mistakes which may cause offence or exacerbate ethnic or religious tensions.
It will demonstrate how to avoid judging any one group by the actions of a few.

Up to sixteen journalists (the majority from Trinidad and Tobago, and six or more from other Caribbean countries) provided with an enhanced understanding of multi-culturalism, the differences
and similarities between various religions and ethnic groups, and of the sensitivities and potential pitfalls in reporting in a multi-cultural environment. Stories on these issues published in participants’ parent media outlets.
This will be a five-day training project with one lead training consultant as well as invited speakers providing explanations and briefings to the journalists on various religious and multi-cultural


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