St. Vincent struggled to maintain strong press freedom: RSF report

  • Attacks on press freedom around the world are increasing, the index shows

While Caribbean countries scored positively this year on the World Press Freedom Index published Friday by the Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF), St. Vincent continues to struggle with press freedom, according to the report.

According to the report, SVG “struggled to maintain a strong record of press freedom, despite editorial censorship and growing political influence.”

The report noted that the same was true of the other five independent member states of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), namely Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Kitts-Nevis.

RSF gave the sub-regional grouping a total points of 62.83, a jump from 93rd position last year to 68.

Jamaica was the highest ranked Caribbean country at number 24, up from position 32 last year, with a total of 77.3 points.

“In Jamaica, press freedom as a whole has continued to improve over the past twenty years.” However, there is a growing gulf of distrust between government officials and the media, which has contributed to a decline in institutional respect for press freedom,” RSF said.

Regarding Trinidad and Tobago, which scored 76.69 points and rose from 30th to 25th place this year, RSF said: “Year after year, Trinidad and Tobago maintains its good record on press freedom, even though There is still room for improvement.”

RSF said in its 2024 report that a growing number of governments and political authorities are failing to fulfill their role in ensuring the best possible environment for journalism and the public’s right to reliable, independent and diverse news and information.

RSF sees a worrying decline in support and respect for media autonomy, as well as an increase in pressure from the state or other political actors.