THE STIGMA OF DRUGS: A GUIDE FOR JOURNALISTS

November 23, 2012

THE STIGMA OF DRUGS: A GUIDE FOR JOURNALISTS

There are very few areas of life left where a journalist could use a pejorative term like "junkie" in a headline without raising any complaints.  Yet when drug use is dealt with in the media, we still frequently see stigmatising terminology in use.  The shame involved in AOD dependence is well known and this shame forms a significant barrier to help seeking for both the person with an AOD dependence, but also for their families and loved ones.  The UK based Society of Editors in conjunction with the UK Drug Policy Commission have developed a resource titled "The Stigma of Drugs: A guide for journalists".  The guide provides an overview of the impact of stigma and sets about providing suggestions for good practice reporting of AOD issues.  A number of very sensible suggestions are included, such as avoiding stigmatising language such as "junkie" but also suggestions with regards to appropriate images associated with drug related media articles.

Go to "The Stigma of Drugs: A guide for journalists"