IRMI expert Taras Boykovych: “Coverage of IDP topic should not be one sided”

In shot there is a Lviv lawyer Taras Boykovych. Today he was one of the experts, who spoke with the journalists during the production training under the project “Regional Eye – Strengthening conflict sensitive coverage in Ukraine’s regional media”. They spoke about legal issues the internally displaced persons face.

Is it always easy to receive a certificate confirming the IDP status? Why do people apply “circle-wise”, and their problems are not solved? How can one correctly  rent accommodation? How problems with employment can be sorted out, if the employment records book remained on the occupied territory, where one used to work?  How and where can one receive legal advice? There are enough questions. First they were discussed at the round table, and then the shooting started. And after it – there are brief comments for an IRMI journalist.

– I believe that the journalist’s task is also to tell people about their rights and duties, as it is determined by law, – he says. – One should tell in a simple and  comprehensive way about the opportunities a person has. I follow the media coverage of IDP-related stories. Unfortunately, most of the stories present IDP’s life as a total problem, in a negative way. Though this is not true. This is the one-sided attitude. Undoubtedly we have many problems with the Law, which is not always followed. There are many other issues, the mental ones. Though I see something else.  I see the IDPs, who start new life, work, overcome obstacles.  It is important to speak about that in order to have balance of thoughts. And to tell these stories as well.

In the opinion of our guest, a journalist should addressing the topic communicate with people, tell about the situation, and in a while return to it again, and analyze whether the angle changed. If not, then to accentuate on the topic, find out, why things happen in a certain way, what the obstacles are.

We learn not only show conflicts, which exist in the society, not only state what happened, but speak with people, the IDPs, locals, administrators and hear them. The lawyer says – one should get deeper in a problem. – He hopes that we will learn to do that.  Thanks to this training as well.

“Regional Eye – Strengthening conflict sensitive coverage in Ukraine’s regional media” – is a 1,5 year project, which is funded by the European Union and  implemented by the Media Consortium of five organizations:  Thompson Foundation, the Institute for Regional Media and Information, the European Journalism Centre, MEMO 98 and Association “Spilnyi Prostir”.


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