The Welsh Liberal Democrats have today called on the Welsh Government to boost support for local and independent media through an increase of public health communications spending.
Since the outbreak of Covid-19 huge work has been done by both the UK and Welsh Government's to ensure public health information is relayed to the public through a variety of sources.
These moves have included getting major media groups onboard to help share information, but many local press organisations and individual journalists have raised that support for them has been much less forthcoming.
In repsonse the Welsh Liberal Democrats are calling for the Welsh Government to pledge that a proportionate share of spending on public health advertising will go to local newspapers and news organisations.
This would result in both a short-term boost to the Government’s public health communications as well as a long-term investment in protecting and maintaining local media across Wales.
Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds said:
"Local press are some of the most trusted sources of news for many of our communities and are a vital part of our efforts to respond and recover from the coronavirus.
"However, many are facing significant financial challenges and this threatens the future of local community journalism. We need to ensure that more of the government's spending on public health advertising goes to local and independent press outlets.
"This will reflect both their importance to our communities and also give them the financial support they need to ensure they don't go under because of this crisis.
"By adopting this proposal the Welsh Government can step up the health information available as well as show that we stand proudly behind community journalism and local publications.
"I hope they will listen and give local newspapers the support they so desperately need."