Published by: National Union of Journalists
308-312 Gray’s Inn Road
London WC1X 8DP
NUJ Guidelines on Gypsies and Travellers:
• Do not sensationalise stories involving Gypsies and Travellers, particularly around their relations with settled communities and over issues concerning housing and education.
• Only use the words Gypsy or Traveller if relevant to a story and accurate.
• Gypsy and Traveller communities are culturally diverse. Ensure your terminology is accurate. Check with a person how they want to be defined. If this is not possible to consult community leaders or organisations.
• Seek the views of the Gypsies and Travellers themselves, as well as those of others, consulting their representative organisations where possible.
Guidelines on reporting immigration and asylum:
• Use the term “immigrant” with caution, it is still wrongly used to describe people born in Britain. Asylum seeker, refugee or EU migrant worker? Get the terminology right.
• When quoting politicians or public figures, verify if their statements on immigration are factual. Ask experts who can help set the context and ensure you check details with a reputable source. Many allegations are made about asylum seekers, ensure you substantiate them, if they are unable to be verified, make this clear.
• Don’t use terms such as “bogus”, “illegal” or “failed” asylum seeker. If necessary, use “refused” asylum seeker instead. A fairer term to use for someone who has outstayed their visa is “undocumented” or “irregular”.
• Don’t use emotive, value-laden language, such as “floods” of immigrants. Stick to facts.