print the article

Related articles
  1. Annual CNN African Journalist Award
  2. Innovative thinking in news about children
  3. One of the most important Catholic newspapers in Canada stops its publication
  4. Palestinian universities to pilot model course on safety of journalists
  5. EJN launches new migration reporting guidelines
  6. Australasian Catholic Press Association : Awards for Excellence 2016
  7. Pope asks journalists to be professional and to respect human dignity
  8. International Day for Universal Access to Information
  9. The Ethical Journalism Network (EJN)
  10. Protecting threatened Journalists: the Journalists-in-Residence Programme
  11. Interview of the new CNS editor in chief
  12. AMECEA social communications department acquires tablets for online correspondents
  13. Burundian journalist receives the Peter Mackler Prize
  14. Register for the European Media Freedom Conference
  15. Tanzanian media professionals asked to be more compassionate
  16. RSF launches its campaign “Some wins don’t deserve medals”
  17. 2016 International Press Freedom Awards
  18. Malawian journalists must report on resilience policies
  19. Spheres: Journal for Digital Cultures
  20. UNESCO workshop: Inform, Engage, Investigate: Media and humanitarians in crisis situations
  21. RSF calls on Maldives to stop dismantling critical media
  22. Journalism in Conflict and Post-Conflict Conditions: Worldwide Perspectives
  23. CBC News programmes on Human Rights wins CJF Jackman Award for Excellence in Journalism
  24. Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Promoting Investigative journalism
  25. Journalists in Indonesia told to be messengers of peace
  26. Manipur to miss newspapers for month as agency is forced shut
  27. The Digital News Report 2016
  28. The use of drones in journalism
  29. RSF report on Syrian journalists
  30. 25 June 2016 – 4th edition of the #ImpactJournalism Day
  31. Reform of the Libyan media sector
  32. Scholarship for journalists from countries in crisis or at war
  33. IWMF Announces The 2016 Courage In Journalism Award Winners
  34. Radio journalist received award for best Filipino media practicioner
  35. Achievement Award to Tanzanian woman journalist
  36. Defending freedom of the press in Pakistan
  37. Media and journalism in Peace Work
  38. Online reporting: Telling Africa’s story on the web
  39. New network to promote African women
  40. "Poor journalism" is the biggest threat to media freedom
  41. World Press Freedom Day: SIGNIS Statement
  42. AMARC celebrates World Press Freedom Day 2016
  43. The African Free Press newspaper
  44. The 2016 World Press Freedom Index
  45. Empowering people through citizen journalism
  46. The good Sheperd: new journal of Pastoral Theology
  47. South Sudanese media are concerned about freedom of expression
  48. Bangladesh’s Catholic weekly turns 75
  49. Media professionals dedicated to raising gender awareness in China
  50. Korean Catholic weekly to launch e-newspaper
  51. Indian bishop urges media to uphold spiritual values, integrity
  52. Violence against female journalists
  53. Scholarships for Journalists
  54. Zambian Church urges Catholic media to be non-partisan on elections
  55. Archbishop Odama calls on the media to be proactive to ensure peaceful general elections
  56. Give Journalists freedom for South Sudan to grow, says Bishop Santo
  57. New edition of safety guide for journalists in high-risk environments
  58. New presidential decree to support media freedom in Afghanistan
  59. US presidential election: a rocky road for journalists
  60. UEC Chairman calls on the media to be proactive to ensure peaceful 2016 general elections
  61. Engaged journalism at Journalism Schools
  62. Indonesian Catholic weekly celebrates 70 years
  63. SOS Media Burundi
  64. Supporters of slain Sri Lankan journalist call for justice
  65. Good journalism vital for democracy, says Ecuadorian President
  66. What is soft censorship today? A report on the press in Macedonia
  67. Media leaders conference on Safety of journalists
  68. Paulines Publications opens new centre in Nairobi
  69. Reporters Without Borders publishes 2015 Round-up
  70. 10th anniversary of Agahi, the first weekly Catholic magazine in Urdu
  71. Open Earth: The beginning of global GeoJournalism
  72. Radio and newspaper ban make social media first choice for news in Burundi
  73. MISA awards journalists for excellence in reporting on children’s rights
  74. Kerala Jesuits publish new magazine to encourage thinking
  75. The Tablet, the 175-year British catholic journal.
  76. Kenyan women ’ignored’ in local media
  77. Professional and citizen journalism: a not so evident relationship
  78. Japanese newspaper readers help Catholic priest to provide education in rural Cambodia
  79. Floods stop publication of century-old Indian newspaper
  80. Catholic Church in Ethiopia organises media workshop on Laudato sì
  81. The 2015 Titus Brandsma Media Awards
  82. The fourth World Journalism Education Congress
  83. Media house attacked over derogatory cartoon in India
  84. National Geographic magazine’s cover story reveals Mary’s appeal
  85. In times of trouble: how media codes strengthen free expression
  86. CPJ honours Ethiopian journalists for their courage
  87. ’’Special Fund for Media Development’’ in Africa to be set up
  88. Women not portrayed equally by news media
  89. Indigenous journalists are changing the news in Saskatchewan
  90. Uganda Episcopal Conference held training for journalists before Papal visit
  91. Ethiopian journalists asked to promote care and protection of the environment
  92. Pacific media urged to promote gender equality
  93. Research: How Europe’s newspapers reported the migration crisis
  94. Indian newspapers protest against Assam Rifles with blank front pages
  95. Indonesia still obstructs foreign media in Papua
  96. Reporters on the Borders Network
  97. Call for responsible journalism in Kenya for Papal’s visit
  98. Media restrictions on Australia’s asylum seeker policy
  99. Catholic press struggles to earn trust in Australia
  100. Consolidating Peace Journalism through radio in Uganda
  101. New online publication: journal for religion, film and media
  102. International Federation of Journalists has a new general secretary
  103. Is journalism under threat?
  104. A new movement for ethical journalism is needed
  105. The rise of popular factual television in the Asia-Pacific region
  106. Global campaign to end impunity for crimes against journalists
  107. UCAN reporter recognized with environmental journalism award
  108. Media pluralism in danger: Monitoring Media Ownership in Colombia
  109. Pictures, refugees and a Jesuit photographer
  110. “In the eyes of the other”: photographic collection of Salesian Missions in Ecuador
  111. Cartoonists, media and ethics in Myanmar
  112. Press councils from South East Europe gather to discuss media ethics
  113. Bangladesh criticized for impunity over blogger murders
  114. Catholic development commission trains journalists on climate resilient policies in Malawi
  115. The literature Nobel Prize goes to a journalist
  116. The media’s role in fostering interfaith ties in Indonesia
  117. Catholic journalists seek greater impact in northern India
  118. Sri Lanka : The Gnanartha Pradeepaya celebrates its 150th birthday
  119. China: Pope Francis and Xi Jinping’s US trip media coverage
  120. Italy : The slow demise of Catholic magazines
  121. Wazala - a new Christian press agency in the Middle East
  122. Australasian Catholic Press Association celebrated 60th Anniversary
  123. Philippines : Bishop lauds arrest of environmental journalist’s alleged killers
  124. US : Papal Visit and Comprehensive media coverage
  125. US : Chicago archdiocese appointed Commonweal editor as new director of media
  126. Malaysia : Catholic newspaper and self censorship
  127. Liberia: Catholic archdiocese launches media programme in schools
  128. Standards of journalism education
  129. SIGNIS Asia reflects on journalism
  130. Philadelphia: 200 journalists attend seminar on Pope Francis
  131. 2015 Egan Journalism Fellowship Calls for Applications
  132. SIGNIS Services Rome Presents the Reporter Kit
  133. IWMF Launches the Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists

Indigenous journalists are changing the news in Saskatchewan

Toronto, Brussels, November, 25th, 2015 (Patricia W. Elliott/SIGNIS). In the beginning of November, “the Decolonizing Media event” was hosted by the University of Regina School of Journalism and the U of R Community Research Unit at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum Theatre, in conjunction with Media Democracy Days. When eleven indigenous journalists and authors took the stage, it was a collective “wow” moment for the audience—and for the panellists themselves.

With veteran CTV assignment editor Nelson Bird, who hails from Peepeekisis First Nation, standing alongside relative newcomer Chris Tyrone Ross, the man behind RezX TV and RezX Magazine, it was clear Indigenous journalists have become a rising force on the Prairies, and that a process of change is well underway.
“We’re actually talking from a position of strength. The majority of the world’s people have been colonized,” noted panellist Doug Cuthand, whose columns appear in newspapers across the country.

“This is the time of truth and reconciliation, and we all have to take that personally. I see my role as someone who asks the questions that need to be asked,” said Betty Ann Adam, whose Star-Phoenix investigations helped launch a public inquiry into the freezing death of teenager Neil Stonechild, witnessed in police custody the night of his death.

JPEG - 12.2 kb
Panelists explained how Indigenous journalists are becoming a rising force in the Prairies. Photo courtesy Eagleclaw Thom.

To CTV’s Bird, decolonizing the media involves educating all Canadians about Indigenous people, something that should start in schools and universities, “not when you get to a newsroom.” “You see people come into the newsroom who really don’t know how the other half lives,” agreed Adam. She cited the example of a young reporter who took a landlord’s version at face value in a landlord-tenant disagreement, without understanding how the Indian Act affects housing and tenancy issues. Adam said the reporter wasn’t deliberately unbalanced—he just lacked crucial information to ask the right questions.

Several of the panellists spoke about myths held by non-Indigenous journalists, some bizarre (an Ontario transplant who was surprised to learn Indigenous people use cutlery), others commonplace (not understanding how the Indian Act affects daily life).
Carmen Robertson, co-author of Seeing Red: A History of Natives in Canadian Newspapers, pointed out examples of how Indigenous people are misrepresented in the media and popular culture.

Creeson Agecoutay–new host of CTV’s Indigenous Circle and recently voted Regina’s favourite journalist by Prairie Dog magazine readers–recalled colleagues constantly using the phrase “let’s get together for a pow-wow” when they wanted to meet. “I would never say, ‘Let’s all get together for a bar mitzvah,’” joked Agecoutay. When he explained to his workmates the role of pow-wow in First Nations society, they stopped using the phrase.

Others agreed that it was helpful to address workplace attitudes up front. “I felt like the token Indian,” said new graduate Jeanelle Mandes, after her first assignment editor slotted her in the Indigenous beat without first asking if she was interested in other things. Although a rookie, she decided to tell her editor she would like more variety.

Change is slow on the outside, too. Ntawnis Piapot, a broadcast journalist who has worked for APTN and CBC, said racism is palpable on the front lines of daily news coverage. “People in power will talk down to you. You definitely feel the racism,” she said, describing situations where interviewees asked when the “real reporter” was showing up. “When you confront racism, you’re looked at as ‘that mad Indigenous woman,’” said Piapot. In the workplace, though, “CBC believed in me,” she said.

The public can be another matter. Responding to an audience question, Leader-Post reporter Kerry Benjoe said online comments discourage Indigenous people from appearing in the media. “It’s upsetting when people say, ‘I don’t want to be in the paper because people will laugh at me,’” she said. Several of the panellists said they avoided reading comments on their stories, which are at best loosely moderated for hateful content.

Speaking of pro-Conservative editorials run by mainstream newspapers like the Globe and Mail during the federal election, Cuthand said, “We’re not getting through to these (editorial boards). There’s a whole new change on the horizon.”

In conversation before the panel, moderator Shauneen Pete said the appetite for Indigenous media surprised her at the premier of The Four, an Access 7 talk show she co-founded. While she assumed family and friends would show up, she didn’t expect some 180 members of the public to pour through the doors to see four Indigenous women talk about current events.


print the article