Female journalists are starting a campaign to tackle harassment within the media industry. The Second Source fights to promote awareness and work with companies to create change around issues of harassment.
The group was set up by leading commentators, editors and broadcasters as a response of the numerous allegations of sexual harassment at all levels of the media industry. It aims to get organisations tackling sexual harassment through examining their policies, improving them through consultation and pledging to meet an agreed standard.
The Second Source will also act as professional network for young women, with mentoring and events.
Rosamund Urwin, Senior Feature Writer at Evening Standard, said “It was after reading a piece by my fellow journalist Emily Reynolds about sexual harassment she had suffered that I realised that unless we act, nothing will change. It will happen to the 23-year-old of tomorrow, as it once happened to me and happened to Emily.”
Urwin added ,“This isn’t—as some have bizarrely framed it—a ‘witch hunt.’ What we want is cultural change in our industry—and we hope this call will spread beyond the media to other workplaces too.”
The group has garnered cross party political support from Members of Parliament. Caroline Lucas MP, head of The Green Party, says “No one should have to suffer harassment at work—it’s great to see women working together to change behaviour and attitudes in this male-dominated industry.”
Jo Swinson MP, Liberal Democrat, has also backed the group, saying, “I’m delighted to support the women journalists creating The Second Source to campaign for changes in the media industry. For all the justified media outrage about sexual harassment in other workplaces, the media must recognize it needs to act on its own harassment problem too.”
Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, has also publicly backed the group, as has Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland.
Other female journalists involved are Kirstie Brewer and Jessica Elgot of The Guardian, Louise Ridley of Buzzfeed, and Stephanie Boland of Prospect magazine.
If you’ve experienced any form of harassment as a journalist, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.