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IFJ condemns sacking of journalist by broadcaster

UPDATE: IFJ condemns Indonesian broadcaster's anti-union activities (IFJ, 4 September 2012)

(IFJ/IFEX) - 17 April 2012 - The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its partner the Federasi Serikat Pekerja Media Indonesia [Independent Media Workers Union Federation] (FSPMI) in condemning the sacking of Indonesia journalist Luviana by a Jakarta-based television station, Metro TV, in February 2012.

It is believed that the sacking followed Luviana and some of her co-workers raising concerns with their employer regarding the company's management. Some of the problems addressed included poor communication between the company and its employees as well as an unresolved appraisal process which was affecting employees' career certainty and well-being.

In a meeting between Luviana and Metro TV, the company's management vowed to address these problems. However, shortly afterwards, the company's management called for Luviana and her two colleagues who had been actively involved in the matter to resign. Luviana's co-workers chose to leave Metro TV and accept severance pay, while Luviana challenged the demand. It is alleged that the company was unable to find any legitimate grounds for Luviana's dismissal.

Luviana then filed a formal complaint to the Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI)'s Jakarta office. Afterwards, AJI initiated several meetings with Metro TV. Despite this, up until early April 2012 the company stood firm on its decision to terminate the employment of Luviana, despite her 10 years of work for the TV station. Eventually, on April 13, 2012, Luviana was no longer allowed access to her office and was prevented from entering by the company's security officers.

The IFJ is seriously concerned by the manner in which Metro TV has addressed the criticisms of its employees.

As such, the IFJ joins the FSPMI in:

1. Condemning the management of Metro TV for laying off Luviana following her criticism of the company's internal processes.
2. Demanding the management of Metro TV retracts its dismissal letter to Luviana, and allowing her to resume her position as producer assistant.
3. Urging Metro TV to respect the human rights of its employees, including freedom of expression and the right to set up workers' union.
4. Urging the Indonesian Ministry of Manpower or the Manpower Agency of West Jakarta to monitor the media's compliance with respect for employees' rights, as protected in Law No.21/2001 on Workers/Labors' Union.
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