Jakarta (ANTARA) - Women journalists are vulnerable to gender-based violence in carrying out their journalistic duties, a Member of the National Commission on Violence against Women (Komnas Perempuan) Veryanto Sitohang said.

An example of such violence pertains to a case involving the sexual harassment faced by a female journalist while covering a national work meeting of one of the political parties in Jakarta in February this year.

The protection of female journalists while doing their job became an important agenda of the media companies under the supervision of the Press Council, he said when contacted here on Thursday.

This is especially important given that Indonesia has Law No. 12 of 2022 on Sexual Violence Crime, he added.

Sitohang said he expects that the Press Council will issue Sexual Violence Reporting Guideline quickly, including for sexual violence prevention and handling and female journalist protection.

In commemoration of the 2023 World Press Freedom Day, the commission lauded journalists, specifically female journalists, for their work to support the eradication of violence against women and female leaders.

This is despite the fact that their job is fraught with danger and there is no optimal protection for female media workers yet.

The commission also expressed support for press freedom as one of the pillars of democracy and urged the government to open access to female journalists to do their job in conflict regions with protection insurance, Sitohang said.

The freedom of the press is mandated within Article 19 of the Declaration of Human Rights, he added.

Meanwhile, Head of the Women Workers Team at Komnas Perempuan Tiasri Wiandani said there are important aspects that should be considered in relation to the prevalence of violence against women in workplace cases.

These include the fact that sexual violence can affect a person's mental and physical well-being.

Because of this, in the effort to support workplace safety and health, the commission has urged everyone to create a safe and comfortable workplace for everyone, specifically female press workers.

Employers, workers' unions, and workers have the responsibility to make the workplace a safe space in terms of work relations, Wiandani said.

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Translator: Anita Permata D, Fadhli Ruhman
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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