The Leveson Report published today recommends that anyone should be able to make a complaint under the new regulatory system of an alleged breach of the Code of Practice, including ‘a representative group affected by the alleged breach’ (Summary of Recommendations 11).
This welcome proposal was called for by NAT (the National AIDS Trust) in its submission to the Leveson Inquiry. Currently complaints about discriminatory reporting can only be made by an individual directly and personally affected by a story. This means prejudicial coverage of HIV in general, where there is no individual named, cannot be challenged.
Deborah Jack, Chief Executive of NAT (the National AIDS Trust), comments:
‘There is still too much poor and prejudicial reporting of HIV and we have on a number of occasions been frustrated at our inability under the current PCC Code to lodge a complaint. The recommendation from Lord Leveson will be an important driver to improve non-discriminatory press reporting and we call for its implementation as soon as possible.’