In St. Kitts and Nevis, we largely enjoy a free press, which has seen the proliferation of media entities, digital and traditional, over the last two decades. Despite this, however, there are a number of issues that affect the ability of journalists to perform their work freely and effectively and which deserve urgent attention.
The lack of a functioning Freedom of Information legislation, first passed in 2015, is one of these challenges. As such, we join our colleagues at the Media Institute of the Caribbean (MIC) in the call for the introduction of Access to Information, in an attempt to fight misinformation and disinformation.
The sign of a maturing democracy is reflected in the buoyancy of its media and the ability of its citizens and residents to access pertinent public information in a timely manner.
The media in St. Kitts and Nevis is hamstrung because it is unable to reliably access information that can help report on crucial national development issues.
Where such ignorance persists, misinformation and disinformation become the order of the day, creating even more challenges for media houses that are already grossly understaffed.
Despite these many challenges, however, the Media Association of St. Kitts and Nevis is confident that the advocacy efforts of our executive team, and the call from civil society, supported by The Association of Caribbean Media Workers (ACM), will result in the relevant mechanisms being put in place to facilitate access to information. This in turn will help provide the framework for an informed public and a dynamic, robust, media.
We encourage our members to remain steadfast in their work as media professionals and to understand the crucial role we play as the fourth estate in a growing democracy.
We wish all our members a Happy Press Freedom Day!
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