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Kyiv independent media trade union will create “the group of fast response”


Kyiv independent media trade union (KIMTU) plans to create “the group of fast response”, which would visit the regions, collect the information about the attacks and pressure on journalists and “present this information to the journalistic community”.

This information was made public by Sergiy Guz, the head of the KIMTU, at the conference “Social protection of journalists. Role of trade unions. Ukrainian and Western experience”, which was held on 14 November in Kyiv. According to Guz, the group will include the professional journalists, who specialize in journalistic investigations. “The media trade union, in its turn, will react through the General Prosecutor’s office, Ministry of Interior and international trade unions”, remarked S. Guz. He informed that the KIMTU would realize the juridical support of journalists during the presidential election campaign and conduct the monitoring of mass media.

The head of the KIMTU told about the recent negotiations with the International Federation of journalists: “We have arranged about the entry of our trade union to this international organization”. S. Guz also pointed out that the media trade union was carrying on the negotiations about cooperation with British and German unions of journalists.

Mr. Guz informed the participants of the conference about the planned social-economic study of the conditions of work of journalists “in order to facilitate the relations with the Ministry of Labor and the Federation of employers”. According to his words, the anonymous poll showed that 70% of journalists got the “illegal salaries”, and about 50% -- had no official labor agreements.

The leader of the KIMTU also proposed to establish the minimal salary for journalists. Journalist Ives-Claude York from the agency “France-Press” told that the minimal salary of a French journalist- probationer was about 1300 Euro per month (2500 Euro in Paris).

Natalya Ligachova, the head of the Internet edition “Telekritika”, declared in her speech at the conference that media trade unions “have not become yet a real guarantee of the protection of journalists’ interests” and that Ukrainian journalists “do not have the real professional solidarity yet”. According to N. Ligachova, the poll and the recent Forum of Ukrainian journalists “Election without censorship” demonstrated that “the majority of journalists do not believe that the top managers of mass media and publishers are able to come to the agreement about the rules of honest struggle during presidential election campaign”.

(UNIAN, “The Poltava oblast media club”, No. 55, 17 November 2003)

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