Irish Penal Reform Trust

How can I make a complaint about a media issue?

Whether a publication has misrepresented you, disrespected your privacy, or printed something untruthful about you, you can follow the guidelines below to make a complaint. 

There are procedures in place that can help you make a complaint against a publication, broadcast, journalist, or reporter. 

Print media

The Office of the Press Ombudsman (OPO) can assist prisoners through the complaints process when there is an alleged breach of the Code of Practice of the Press Council. These Codes direct member publications to: respect privacy and family life; strive for truth and accuracy; not publish rumour as if it were fact; and much more.

These Codes apply to all member publications of the Press Council: daily and Sunday newspapers published in the RoI; most local papers; many magazines; online news publications; and digital outlets of member publications.

The OPO site has a section dedicated to the complaints process for prisoners. The information is also available in a print-ready PDF format here.

Television or radio

The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) also have a complaints handling process when broadcasting codes have not been complied with by television or radio shows.

The Authority has guidelines for making a complaint and makes samples of published complaints available online.

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In both instances, there is a time limit for you to submit your complaint. However, if you believe that you might struggle to comply with this time limit, you can nominate someone to make a complaint on your behalf.

For further information, visit the OPO and BAI websites.

Respect for rights in the penal system with prison as a last resort.

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