Queen praises ‘trusted and reliable’ news during coronavirus pandemic


The Queen says the pandemic has shown the importance of the news industry as it provides ‘trusted, reliable sources of information’ in a dramatically changing world.

She highlighted the ‘vital’ public service role it has played, particularly given the proliferation of social media.

The sovereign also described the news industry’s efforts to support communities as ‘invaluable’, thanks to campaigns, fundraising efforts and volunteering drives.

In a message to mark the launch of Journalism Matters Week, run by the News Media Association (NMA) trade body, she writes: ‘The Covid-19 pandemic has once again demonstrated what an important public service the established news media provides, both nationally and regionally.

The Queen has said that the pandemic has shown the importance of the news industry as it provides ‘trusted, reliable sources of information’ in a dramatically changing world

‘As our world has changed dramatically, having trusted, reliable sources of information, particularly at a time when there are so many sources competing for our attention, is vital.’

The Queen added: ‘The efforts of the news media to support communities throughout the United Kingdom during the pandemic have been invaluable – whether through fundraising, encouraging volunteering or providing a lifeline for the elderly and vulnerable to the outside world.’

In April, the Daily Mail launched Mail Force as an emergency response to the national shortage of personal protective equipment for frontline healthcare staff.

Donations poured in from tens of thousands of Mail readers and leading philanthropists, and the total has passed £11million.

Mail Force has since procured a vast range of PPE and sent tens of millions of items to grateful hospitals, care homes and charities around Britain. 

The charity’s funds now have been allocated to testing equipment on the basis that this is the most pressing issue when it comes to protecting healthcare staff.

Our Great British September Clean, in partnership with Keep Britain Tidy, also encouraged individuals and families the length and breadth of the country to get out into their communities and tackle the blight of lockdown litter. It earned the support of the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

And just this weekend, the Duchess of Cornwall spoke exclusively to the Daily Mail about the saddening toll of isolation and loneliness that the pandemic has heaped on the nation’s older generation. 

The Mail lent its support to yesterday’s annual Silver Sunday, which encourages people to reach out to elderly family, friends and neighbours.

Today sees the launch of the NMA’s Journalism Matters Week, which celebrates journalism in the UK. 

In a message to mark the launch of Journalism Matters Week, the sovereign described the news industry's efforts to support communities as 'invaluable'

In a message to mark the launch of Journalism Matters Week, the sovereign described the news industry’s efforts to support communities as ‘invaluable’

The NMA is the voice of national, regional and local news media organisations and promotes the interests of news publishers.

Commenting on the Queen’s support for its new campaign, NMA chairman Henry Faure Walker said: ‘In the news media industry, part of our job has been to help our readers make sense of these unprecedented events. We have reported on every twist and turn of the local and national lockdowns and kept you up to date with vital public health information. We have held power to account and robustly challenged the decision-makers on your behalf.

‘Sometimes, our role has been to seek clarity amid confusion from the authorities, and toxic misinformation about coronavirus spread by bad actors on social media.’

He added: ‘The local and national news media have been a fundamental part of the country’s response to coronavirus and will continue to be so.’ 

As part of Journalism Matters Week, the NMA is today opening the annual Making a Difference public vote for the best national and local newspaper campaigns. 

It will run until 5pm on Wednesday, October 7.

Among the campaigns nominated are several run by the Daily Mail: Save Our Post Offices, The Great British Spring Clean, Give Children Their Jabs, and End The Dementia Care Cost Betrayal. To vote, go to the journalismmatters.co/ Making-a-Difference website.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk