As Austrian Association of Community Broadcasters we are very concerned by the news we received from Radio Student that the current representatives of University of Ljubljana Student Organisation (ŠOU) attend to strip Radio Študent (RŠ) of its funding for 2021.
RŠ is on the one hand a respected Community Media institution in Europe. Its work and legacy should not be risked lightly as it is without doubt of great value for Slovenia and beyond. On the other hand Radio Študent is a very valued partner of our association as well as our members when it comes to international collaborations.
As we understand Radio Študent also proofed especially during the Covid Pandemic that - as a grassroot medium - it is providing information and addressing the need for processing within local communities, especially in times of crisis.
So RŠ plays an important journalistic, educational and cultural role that ŠOU should foster and can be proud of as a great asset.
The importance of independent Community Media in fulfilling these roles and functions is also underlined by several European institutions as well as policy documents.
We would also like to point out that the Slovenian within the European Media Pluralism Monitor shows a high risk in the categories of social inclusiveness, media plurality and political independence. These already concerning results are still with Radio Študent that is strengthening Slovenian position in all three of these categories.
Therefore the Austrian Association of Community Broadcasters expresses full support to Radio Študent in this struggle for survival. We would like to encourage you to kindly regard our arguments and to rethink your plans and to provide stable and increased financing for RŠ.