On August 16, freelancers, stringers, and other comparable arrangements were added to the “employee” definition to qualify for Priority-2 U.S. Refugee Admission from Afghanistan, following a letter from over 20 news organizations, including the Alliance. This expansion is a pivotal response to the chaos in Afghanistan, as the Taliban takes over Kabul and specifically targets journalists with particular aggression towards female journalists. The safety of these journalists, as well as their ability to operate without danger in neighboring countries is the immediate concern. As for a long term solution, the Special Immigrant Visas should contain a specific media carveout in order to protect foreign journalists and allow them to relocate to the United States. While the timing and costs of these solutions remain at issue, ensuring the safety of the many endangered journalists is the predominant priority. Read more.
Members of the News/Media Alliance staff have contributed to this post.