Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Call for journalists to improve disability knowledge

MEDIA RELEASE
7 August 2013
Call for journalists to improve disability knowledge!
A report being launched today says that the lack of disability awareness and responsiveness within the New Zealand media is huge. This lack of awareness contributes to journalists, more often than not, seeking out the voices of organisations run for, and not by, disabled people and also the voices of family/whanau members rather than of the disabled people themselves, according to the report - which investigates how disabled New Zealanders are portrayed by the media. The report will be launched this evening, by the Minister for Disability Issues: Hon Tariana Turia, at a function in the Beehive.

This report is the work of a group of disabled people’s organisations, led by disabled people and known as the NZ Convention Coalition Monitoring Group. “The project team and all those associated with the work are themselves disabled people” said Rachel Noble, chair of the NZConvention Coalition Monitoring Group.

The report provides an analysis of the portrayal of disabled people by the major print, television and radio media in 2012.
Rachel Noble said that “The New Zealand media performs well when it comes to reporting disability-related matters in some areas, such as the breadth of issues covered. Looking at the analysis of 2012 media items highlighted in the report, the outlets surveyed carried coverage about accessibility, reasonable accommodations, the abuse and neglect of disabled people, income support and the social and political participation of disabled people. By covering such stories, the media enabled New Zealanders to gain a better understanding of some of the key issues faced by their fellow disabled citizens.”

However, it’s not all good news. Rachel Noble said “the media personalities who were interviewed for the report, demonstrated a generally confused attitude to impairment and disability issues. In holding and conveying these attitudes, media personalities are by no means alone. These attitudes are a reflection of those held by the general population and unfortunately the media tend to reinforce these.

She also points out that the disability community would welcome the retirement by the media of terms such as ‘crippled’, ‘wheelchair bound’, ‘handicapped’, ‘mad’ and ‘senile’, in stories about people with impairments.”

The report notes that language does have a bearing on how societal groups are perceived and treated. “While the right of journalists and commentators to espouse their views is recognised, they should appreciate that impairment could either affect them or a family member or friend at any time” Rachel Noble said today.

The report will be submitted to the New Zealand Government.

[ENDS]

Brief fact sheet – about the monitoring process

New Zealand ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD) in September 2008.

Article 33 of the convention relates to the national implementation and monitoring of the Convention.

Article 33.1 provides that Government establish a focal point "for matters relating to the implementation of the present Convention". That focal point is the Office for Disability Issues in the Ministry of Social Development.

Article 33.2 provides for the establishment of the Independent Monitoring Mechanism for the monitoring of the implementation of the Convention. Government has designated three organisations to jointly perform this function - the Human Rights Commission, the Office of the Ombudsmen and the Convention Coalition.
Article 33.3 says that disabled people, through their representative organisations, must be involved in monitoring the Convention's implementation.

To this end, eight disabled people's organisations (DPOs) formed the Convention Coalition at the beginning of 2010. The Convention Coalition provides the civil society component of the obligations for national implementation and monitoring of the Convention under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding signed by its member organisations. The eight national DPOs are:
• Association of Blind Citizens of New Zealand Inc.
• Balance New Zealand
• Deaf Aotearoa New Zealand
• Deafblind (NZ) Incorporated
• Disabled Persons Assembly (NZ) Inc. (DPA)
• Nga Hau E Wha
• Ngāti Kāpō O Aotearoa
• People First New Zealand Inc.
In particular, the Convention Coalition provides an ethical mechanism for disabled people's input into the monitoring of their rights, as stated in the Convention. Through its links to Disability Rights Promotion International, based at York University, Toronto, Canada, the Convention Coalition ensures a sustainable process for this input into the future.

Target group

The Convention Coalition involves the widest group of disabled people possible in any or all of the elements of monitoring. Disabled people are defined (in consistency with the Convention's understanding of disability as an evolving concept) as including those who have long term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments. Every effort is made to ensure the monitoring activities cover people with all types of impairment, drawn from rural and urban areas in the North and South Islands including Maori and Pasefika.

Long term goals of the Convention Coalition

New Zealand is obligated to monitor the implementation of the Convention. By supporting disabled people's organisations to be an equal partner in the monitoring framework, and to link with a reputable international project supporting disabled people to monitor the experience of their rights, the Convention Coalition can ensure it honours the spirit of the Convention and develop a sustainable process. The Convention Coalition anticipates this will help to further the implementation of the Convention in New Zealand and of outcomes for disabled people.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Andrew Little’s Debut, Mockingjay, And Drunk Texting

John Key’s credibility has taken a hammering this week – at least among the 50% of the electorate who have always had doubts about him on that score.

The other substantial story of the week has been about Andrew Little’s debut as Labour leader, which has received top marks, especially among the 25% of the electorate still voting Labour. According to some reports, the Labour caucus has been ‘in seventh heaven’ about Little’s success this week in taking it to the government in the House. More>>

ALSO:

 
 

Parliament Today:

Gordon Campbell: On Government Arrogance

Right now, National is ramming anti-terrorism measures through Parliament. This legislation will grant the SIS the power to carry out 48 hour bouts of surveillance on anyone without a warrant, and will bestow on government the power to unilaterally revoke anyone’s passports and thus deny them the freedom to travel. More>>

ALSO:

Glenn Inquiry: Report Offers Solutions To Family Violence

The People’s Blueprint unveiled today by Sir Owen Glenn’s independent inquiry into child abuse and domestic violence outlines a new, more cohesive and effective system for reducing New Zealand’s alarmingly high family violence rates. More>>

ALSO:

Environment Commissioner: Changing Climate And Rising Seas - Understanding The Science

A rising sea will be with us for a long time to come – one way or another we will have to adapt. But how high and how fast the water rises will be influenced by the speed at which the world – including New Zealand – reduces greenhouse gas emissions over the coming decades. More>>

ALSO:

Key Texts With Whale Oil Released: PM Can’t Be Trusted Over Dirty Politics Defence - Greens

John Key’s answers to questions about dirty politics can’t be trusted, after he was forced to admit that he had misled journalists and Parliament about contact with attack blogger Cameron Slater, said the Green Party today.. More>>

ALSO:

Temporary Release Crackdown Continues: Corrections Review Of Phillip Smith Case

“The review by Corrections’ Chief Custodial Officer reveals that the plan for Smith’s series of temporary releases was overly ambitious and misinformed. He’s a highly manipulative and deceptive person who although technically eligible, should not have been considered for temporary release." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news