NASW vehemently opposes recent assaults on press freedom

Reporters, photojournalists, and media crews in many U.S. cities have been arrested, tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed, and shot with rubber bullets and other non-lethal projectiles while covering protests despite clearly identifying themselves as credentialed media. These protests over police violence took place after a Minneapolis police officer killed an unarmed Black man, George Floyd, by kneeling on his neck for more than eight minutes while other officers looked on. Documenting civic demonstrations and unrest is a critical part of the media’s role in ensuring an informed public, and the right to do so is protected by the First Amendment.

The National Association of Science Writers vehemently opposes assaults on press freedom and calls on local, state, and national leaders to ensure that police protect the public’s right to know by allowing reporters to do their jobs safely. We also recognize that journalists of color can experience trauma in covering these events without the added threat of being targeted as members of the media and stand in solidarity.

Established in 1934, the National Association of Science Writers fosters the dissemination of accurate information regarding science by supporting the professional development of science writers. Membership is open to working journalists, PIOs, writers, authors, and other content creators, as well as students. Our community spans freelancers and employees working at newspapers, wire services, magazines, radio and television, and digital properties, as well as universities, agencies, and other institutions across the United States and beyond. Above all, NASW fights for the free flow of science news. To learn more, visit www.nasw.org and follow us at twitter.com/ScienceWriters.

Jun. 1, 2020

Drexel University Online