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Archive for Friday, March 19, 2010

State Senate panel approves ‘shield’ law

March 19, 2010

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— A Senate committee on Thursday recommended approval of a “shield” law that is designed to protect journalists from being forced to reveal information.

“Journalists must remain independent so they can get sources to come forward and reveal the kind of information the public needs to judge how its government is working,” said Doug Anstaett, executive director of the Kansas Press Association, which has been working on the issue for several years.

“This bill, if approved by the Legislature, will bring better balance to the conflicts that sometimes arise when the press and the courts are trying to do their jobs,” he said.

The measure, by state Sen. Terry Bruce, R-Hutchinson, would protect journalists from being held in contempt by a court when refusing to disclose information. There would be ways for a court to get the information, but those would be limited. The bill now goes to the full Senate for consideration.

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