for diverse, democratic and accountable media

Hillsborough verdict gives hope to Orgreave campaign

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The fourteen jury verdicts delivered at the Hillsborough inquest on Tuesday bring to an end one stage of the tireless campaign by the bereaved families to establish the truth about who was responsible for the terrible disaster. The verdicts were a stunning vindication of the stamina and determination of the Hillsborough campaigners.

But now another campaign opens up – one for justice.

The South Yorkshire Police (SYP) chief superintendent in command at the match, David Duckenfield, should now face criminal charges. As should the SYP for the way it conducted itself on the day, its behaviour in the aftermath spreading deliberate and cynical lies blaming the fans, and its unreformed conduct seeking to maintain these lies during the inquest and right up until the jury’s verdict on Tuesday. The role and conduct of West Midlands Police, who investigated South Yorkshire Police's conduct for the original inquiry, should also be part of this criminal investigation.

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Tony Garnett on his new book The Day The Music Died: A Memoir.

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From his childhood in working-class, war-torn Birmingham to his passionate battle to bring controversial topics into the public eye through film and TV, The Day the Music Died is the memoir of BBC director and producer, Tony Garnett.Garnett launch leaflet

PLUS

The Price of Coal Part 2, Back To Reality (1977). The drama was filmed in the disused Thorpe Hesley pit, near Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
Director: Ken Loach; Producer: Tony Garnett; Written by Barry Hines.

PLUS

A Celebration of the Life and Work of Barry Hines. Compere Writer and Broadcaster Ian Clayton.

Tickets £5.00 Available from www.unityworks.co.uk/events

Unity+Works, Wakefield, Saturday 16 July, 2.00-5.00pm


Off the agenda: Why press silence speaks volumes about the dangers of concentrated media

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John WhittingdaleReal press power resides in the the ability to suppress a scandal, at least as much as the ability to produce one. This is the lesson we learn repeatedly when journalists, facing the combined pressures of austerity, failing business models and an increasingly cautious and interventionist management decide enough is enough. The latest in this new cadres of whistleblowers from inside the fourth estate is Jim Cusick, former political correspondent for the Independent. Like his former counterpart at the Telegraph Peter Oborne, who resigned amidst the appalling silence of his paper in the face of the tax scandal embroiling HSBC (coincidentally, a major advertising account holder), Cusick has pointed the finger at senior management – and an enduring Fleet Street cabal – for strangling journalism at the Indie.

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Speak in safety:parliamentary event 11 April

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Surveillance campaigners are challenging MPs to boost safety and confidentiality measures in the controversial Investigatory Powers Bill, before it is rushed in to law. On Monday evening the Speak in Safety campaign hosts an event in Parliament, chaired by Joanna Cherry QC MP, to persuade MPs and Lords that more caution is needed. Crucial clauses in the Bill are up for debate in Committee the next day. According to the Speak in Safety campaign, the Bill does not protect the safety and confidentiality of sources and whistle-blowers, or of individuals seeking legal representation.

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Podcast

Freedom of Information at risk?
Hard-won 'rights to know' might be restricted by future expenditure cuts in Whitehall and campaigners fear the Freedom of Information Act could become a target for efficiency savings. Listen to our latest podcast about threats to FOI, with Nicholas Jones.
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