Free offer to NUJ members
The Chartered Institute of Journalists is offering free membership to NUJ members who oppose that union’s support for state regulation of the press.
CIoJ President Charlie Harris said that the NUJ’s position on Leveson amounted to an “insupportable attack on the integrity of its own members”, and that the Institute, which opposes any state involvement in the enforcement of editorial ethics, was offering like-for-like free membership to NUJ members until their NUJ subs are due for renewal.
Mr Harris said, “The NUJ is supporting statutory regulation of the press without consulting its members.
“The CIoJ, backed by its members, believes that restrictions on the press – however light-touch now – open the door to tough state interference in free speech under a future government.
“We have already seen several attempts to shut down embarrassing stories using Leveson as an excuse.
“The CIoJ’s position is clear: the allegations made against the media at the Leveson inquiry involved illegality – phone hacking, bribing of public officials, and interception of e-mails.
“This was a failure of law enforcement by the police, and others.
“We do not support state interference in a free press, however it is achieved, whether through legislation, statutory underpinning or a Royal Charter.”
Mr Harris said the Institute had seen an influx of NUJ defectors in recent months as a result of the contrast between the two unions’ stands on regulation.
“We are apolitical, and do not kowtow to political parties, the TUC, employers’ bodies or unaccountable pressure groups such as Hacked Off,” he said.
“We are run by our members to uphold their interests, promote journalism as a profession, uphold editorial standards, and protect the freedom of the media.”
“We cannot sit back and watch as the NUJ throws away 300 years of press freedom.”
Details of the offer to NUJ members can be obtained by e-mailing email@example.com or calling 020 7252 1187 or you may join the CIoJ here.