Are Media Practitioners In Barbados On The "Ball"?

The ACM Executive, 2007-09: Standing – Guy Delva, Peter Richards, Michael Bascombe, Canute James; Sitting – Nita Ramcharan, Wesley Gibbings & Anika Kentish.

We find it interesting, in fact amusing, that there is an association called ‘Association of Caribbean Media Workers (ACM) and media houses or a cadre of journalists from Barbados have not assumed a meaningful role in that association in recent times. The association recently held its Fourth Biennial General Assembly and to our surprise Barbados was reported to have been absence. It is worthwhile to note that the inaugural meeting of the ACM was held in Barbados six years ago.

Barbados has historically prided itself as playing a leading role in many of the regional agencies. We therefore have to ask media practitioners in Barbados to explain their glaring absence from the ACM Executive in recent times. BU should not be surprise at this current state of affairs because we have been asking the question over and over in our previous articles: why is it that the Barbados Association of Journalist (BAJ) have disregarded the need to organize themselves under an umbrella body that would enable them to more effectively mobilize the cause of the venerable Fourth Estate which they represent. Do they not appreciate their key role in disseminating accurate news on behalf of the PEOPLE?

The last time we checked the BAJ was still involved in a deep slumber.

The ACM includes media houses and journalists alike as members; this fact makes the BU household embarrass at the non-existent role Barbadian members of the Fourth Estate seem to be playing. Many of the other islands which many Barbadians would admit are less developed in economic terms appear to be very active in the ACM. BU congratulate the ACM at the work they are doing to involve the regional media in the mainstream of decision making in our region. According to the ACM’s website they have completed many engagements for which they should be very proud:

The ACM has partnered with agencies such as the International Labour Organisation (ILO), United Nations Information Centre for the Caribbean (UNIC), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), Caribbean Association of Industry and Commerce (CAIC), Caribbean Congress of Labour (CCL), Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and Caribbean Environmental Health Institute (CEHI) on a number of professional development projects and seminars.

The organisation also serves on the Advisory Council to the Prime Ministerial Sub-Committee on the CARICOM Single Market and Economy where we have been arguing the case for the expeditious implementation of the free movement provisions of the CSME with respect to media workers in the region. Its President also sits on the Regional Advisory Board of the Jamaica-based Caribbean Institute for Media and Communication (CARIMAC).

The ACM is also associated with the International News Safety Institute (INSI) and collaborates with Reporters Sans Frontieres (RSF), the International Freedom Exchange (IFEX), the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) on matters related to maintenance of the free press.

It appears that our friends at the ACM have something in common with the BAJ. When we consider the important entities they both represent, it amazes us that they both are operating under an informal arrangement. A check of the ACM website confirms that a priority in the coming year is to ‘become legally incorporated”. We note with interest that the ACM was expected to compile a State of the Caribbean Media Report II, (2005-2007) and was awaiting submissions from Barbados and Jamaica. The report was anticipated to be completed by January 15, 2007.

BU again is forced to ask the question, was the report finally submitted and who in Barbados submitted the report.

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4 thoughts on “Are Media Practitioners In Barbados On The "Ball"?

  1. I used to live in St.Kitts (population 45,000)and there was more open, investigative journalism in Kitts (and better writing) in one week than there is here in a year. Perhaps the Nation will buck its ideas, and standards, up and stop accepting every press release and statement made by government and corporations and do some actual reporting for a change.

  2. Pingback: » Please get my point - Carsicot Scandal Keltruth Corp.: News Blog of Keltruth Corp. - Miami, Florida, USA.

  3. The problem is that an issue like this one is not sexy enough to evoke comments. It is not about stealing, or sex etc. it is simply about a passive media which continue to cower in the face of their responsibilities.

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