(c) Allan LEONARD @MrUlster
Dr Cheryl Lawther, Lecturer in the School of Law at Queen’s University Belfast, opened the launch of media guidelines for interviewing victims and survivors of the Troubles. The Queen's team of the project 'Apologies, Abuses and Dealing with the Past' worked with the Commission for Victims and Survivors to create these guidelines. They were designed both for helping victims and survivors to share their stories with the media and for providing an ethical code of conduct to journalists, editors and educators interviewing people with conflict-related trauma. The panel stressed that these long-awaited guidelines could be a practical tool to “humanise” victims’ storytelling and to encourage silent victims to raise their voices. As Susan McKay emphasised, a journalist and co-author of the guidelines, storytelling can be a positive and empowering experience for victims and survivors, and the guidelines are a way to achieve it.
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