TD and Sinn Féin spokesperson on Communications, Climate Action and the Environment David Cullinane TD has called for positive action to support local and regional newspapers during this difficult period.
Deputy Cullinane is calling on Government Departments to take out advertising in local papers to both disseminate important information to the public while in turn providing financial support to local newspapers.
Speaking today, Deputy Cullinane said: “Over the last few days I have engaged directly and constructively with Minister Richard Bruton on solutions needed to support local print and broadcasting media. I welcome the temporary waiver of the Broadcast Levy and I have called for greater flexibility in releasing funds under the Sound and Vision Scheme. “Equally, local print media needs urgent support. A crash in advertising revenue is having a devastating impact and is threatening the viability of local and trusted newspapers.
“I have asked Minister Bruton to establish a fund to be used by government Departments to advertise important information and updates on measures to combat COVID-19 in local papers. These can relate to health, employment rights, employer obligations and other general advice to the public. “This would fulfil a number of purposes – to help disseminate accurate information to the public through reliable and trusted local publications, while also providing much needed revenue for local newspapers. “This is a serious and precarious situation for all sectors of the economy. We must do all we can to protect the vital services that local broadcast and print media provide.”