Roundtable – Media and NGOs working on social cohesion, racism and public discourse

Symbiosis, in cooperation with the Media Diversity Institute and in partnership with the Journalist’s Union of northern Greece, Macedonia and Thrace, organized a roundtable on 13-14 September 2012 in Thessaloniki. The objective of the roundtable was encourage dialogue between journalists, civil society organizations and policy makers on facilitating inclusion and social cohesion and combating racism and xenophobia in Greece. Racist violence in Greece was dramatically on the rise as the social fabric of the country had been torn apart by the recent economic crisis. The audience was comprised of approximately forty individuals from a range of CSOs, media and local institutions from Thessaloniki and from other cities. Participants drew on their experiences to express their work and viewpoints, and contribute to action plans regarding future policies. Specifically, the roundtable provided a space for media to reflect on their responsibility to eliminate discrimination and allowed interesting debates on cooperation and understanding between actors from different sectors.

By September 2012, Symbiosis, the Media Diversity Institute and the Journalist’s Union of Northern Greece, Macedonia and Thrace, had effectively cooperating for over a year. The partnership started with an initial collaboration as part of the Ethical Journalism Initiative in the June 2011 conference on Migration in Thessaloniki and continued with the Union’s contribution to MDI’s and Symbiosis’s “Migrant Voices” project in May 2012 as well as with their cooperation for the “Let’s go Together” programme.

The roundtable was part of the larger initiative: “Civil Society and the Media Working Together to Fight Ethnic and Religious Discrimination in the EU”, supported by the EU FP7 Accept Pluralism Programme and the OSF’s Think Tank Fund.

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