27 June 2014

Union conflict in Argentina could disrupt public’s right to information, IAPA says

Miami (June 26, 2014)—Interruption of broadcasting on Argentina’s América TV and A24 television channels due to a labor conflict was deplored today by the Inter American Press Association (IAPA), which called on the authorities to mediate with the parties in dispute to avoid as far as possible that it continue to limit the human right to freedom of expression and the public’s right to information. The firing last month of a costumier employee of América TV held by the Argentine Television Union (SATSAID) to be unjustified, gave rise to a dispute with the executives of the on-air América TV channel and the cable television A24, both belonging to the Grupo UNO Medios group. The dispute, which failed to be resolved on the intervention of the Labor Ministry, led to work stoppages by union members, among them technical staff, disrupting the channels’ programming, newscasts and other live broadcasts. The chairman of the IAPA’s Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Claudio Paolillo, declared, “Apart from the constitutional rights to freedom of assembly and to stage strikes, we condemn any action that could amount to an excess in violating another constitutional right such as freedom of expression, conceived as the right to seek and disseminate information without restrictions and the public’s right to receive it.” Paolillo, editor of the Montevideo, Uruguay, weekly Búsqueda, called on the corresponding Argentine authorities “to take the necessary action so that without prejudice to the rights of the parties involved in the labor conflict, freedom of expression not be violated.” The IAPA is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the defense and promotion of freedom of the press and of expression in the Americas. It is made up of more than 1,300 print publications from throughout the Western Hemisphere and is based in Miami, Florida. For more information please go to http://www.sipiapa.org.