JAKARTA, Indonesia

The Alliance of Independent Journalists of Indonesia asked media companies to raise awareness about the safety and health of journalists amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

More than 50 staff members at the Radio of the Republic of Indonesia in Surabaya have tested positive for the disease, while two employees of Television of the Republic of Indonesia died due to the infection.

Since then, both companies have halted their operations temporarily.

Previously, the Bali province also reported that one journalist died of COVID-19.

Abdul Manan, the chairman of the alliance, said media companies should provide adequate self-protection equipments for their employees.

“The media should allow their staff, especially journalists, to work from home,” he said in a press release on Tuesday.

In addition, companies are obliged to spray disinfectants regularly.

“If their employees started to show COVID-19 symptoms, they must inform it immediately to their colleagues, so the ones who had contacted with them can do self-isolation,” said Manan.

The journalist alliance also asked the government to reduce activities that involve journalists physically, such as inviting them to events or press conferences, in a bid to prevent transmission of the virus.

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