More food for thought on the issue of how the media covers Aboriginal health and related issues…Kerry Klimm, director of kinnected – an Indigenous media/communication consultancy, has written about the centrality of relationships to improving this coverage:
“I am an Aboriginal woman who has worked as a journalist in mainstream and Indigenous media for 10 years. Now I work with Indigenous organisations developing media and communication strategies.
Indigenous organisations, particularly in the health sector are fast learning that being media savvy is not only a way to educate wider Australia about Indigenous issues, but to get governments to listen.
Sadly, following the release of the Prime Minister’s “Close the Gap” report, one year on from the Apology, I wondered if there was really any point to what I’m doing.
The coverage was basic and the government report left largely unchallenged. I thought the media & its audience just aren’t interested in alternative Indigenous voices, community driven solutions and positive outcomes.
But, I know that it’s not about interest or lack there-of, it’s about relationships, and this takes time to build.
We need to build positive relationships with non-Indigenous Australians so they will challenge what they read/hear and see in the media.
We need to build positive relationships with journalists to feel comfortable inviting them into our office, organisations and communities. And to feel even more comfortable when they return to their office to write the story.
We need to build positive relationships with each other (IndigenousAustralians / Organisations) to stay focused on the agenda of improving outcomes.”