Chair of the Senate Inquiry into Press Freedoms, Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, has vowed to look at the treatment of the press covering the protests in America after a shocking attack by police in Washington DC on a 7 News Australia crew.
“Police and riot squads punching and assaulting journalists who are doing their jobs is simply unacceptable. We have seen footage not just of Australian press being treated this way but local media who have been arrested, shot with rubber bullets, tear gassed and bashed by police across America,” Senator Hanson-Young said.
“It’s wrong when it’s happening in Hong Kong and it’s wrong when it’s happening in America.
“Here in Australia we are not immune with police raids on journalists and state and federal governments cracking down on the democratic right to protest, perpetuating a dangerous culture of government shutting down dissent.
“A free press is essential for democracy. This shocking violence towards the media in the USA is an attack on press freedom everywhere.
“A free and open democracy depends on its citizens having access to information and independent reporting of events, activists and behaviour of Government and authorities.”
“As Chair of the Inquiry, I’ll be asking the Committee to look at what has occurred in the US towards the press and what Australia’s response has been.”