Source: Lawyers for Human Rights (South Africa)
On the 26th and 27th November 2020, journalists working in community radio and community print media from around South Africa gathered for a workshop with the theme “Reporting on Statelessness in South Africa”. The workshop was co-hosted by Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) and the Institute for the Advancement of Journalism (IAJ), with the support of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (“UNHCR”).
The workshop is designed to orientate journalists on the concept, causes and consequences of statelessness in South Africa and to empower them to use media and communications as a platform to raise awareness of the plight of stateless persons or persons at risk of statelessness. The journalists were also introduced to the #IBelong Campaign – this is a global campaign launched in 2014, by the UNHCR with the objective to end statelessness in ten years.
The workshop was a resounding success and concluded with the journalists penning a collective Action Plan stating their commitment to the cause and to using journalism as a tool for more advocacy on eradicating statelessness in South Africa. “Awareness about statelessness is something that we need to work on. If the media doesn’t know about it then how will anyone else learn about it,” said Stella Baloi from Stokvel Talk reflecting on the fact that statelessness is underreported in South Africa and that journalists have a significant role to play in the fight to end statelessness.