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A Montana politician’s assault on a reporter highlights dangers to journalists in community media.

Greg Gianforte has defended his assault of a Guardian journalist during a campaign stop May 24. The attack has drawn international attention. House Republicans have reportedly stood with Gianforte, even after police filed charges over the incident.

For community media journalists, the news comes amid several high-profile issues involving reporters:

  • NFCB Board Member Jenni Monet continues to face charges after an arrest associated with her coverage of Standing Rock protests. She is expected to address the issue at the Community Media Conference in July.
  • Dan Heyman of Public News Service was arrested after asking Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price a question during his “listening tour.” Lark Corbeil of PNS is expected to speak about the case at the Community Media Conference as well.
  • CQ Roll Call reporter John Donnelly was attacked by security while covering the FCC.

NFCB has addressed press freedom, including calling for charges to be dropped against Monet. The organization will feature a journalism intensive and more journalism tracks in July.

Groups like the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the Committee to Protect Journalists provide resources to community radio and community media reporters needing legal guidance and support.

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