Declining sales for print, closing publications,
furlough and shrinking editorial teams – it’s a difficult time to work in the
media. Whether staffer or freelancer, the following associations, unions and
support groups are doing their part to highlight issues happening across the
profession and support those working within it.
NUJ – National Union of Journalists
Welcomes: Staffers and freelancers in broadcasting, national and
regional newspapers, magazines, books, public relations, photographers and
When it was founded: 1907.
What are the benefits of joining: NUJ
Extra, its registered charity, helps members and their dependents in times of
need and the union provides legal support and training. NUJ also works to
defend press freedom and ensure the health and safety of journalists while they
BAJ – The British Association of Journalists
Welcomes: Staff and freelance journalists working
across newspapers, magazines, broadcast and online media.
When it was founded: 1992.
What are the benefits of joining: In-house
legal advice on employment and copyright issues, UK Press Card accreditation, links
to job listings, graduate vacancies and more.
The Chartered Institute of Journalists
Welcomes: Anyone employed in the field of journalism.
When it was founded: CIoJ was founded
(originally as the National Association of Journalists) in 1884.
What are the benefits of joining: The
Institute is both a professional society and a trade union that protects its
members in the workplace and campaigns for better conditions. Its professional
side deals with ethics and standards in the media and protects journalistic
Foreign Press Association
Welcomes: Foreign correspondents across all media –
print, news agencies, broadcast and digital.
When it was founded: FPA counts itself as the first
and oldest association of foreign journalists in the world and was founded in
What are the benefits of joining: FPA is the only
association that can provide foreign journalists with access to parliament and
holds government, city and royal events throughout the year. A weekly bulletin
with news for members is sent out every Friday.
The Society of Women Writers and Journalists
Welcomes: Women writers and journalists
When it was founded: 1894.
What are the benefits of joining: The society
promotes opportunities for women to ‘write and be heard’, no matter their race,
religion or geographic location – members receive in-house magazine The
Journal, a newsletter with news and activities, a SWWJ press card and invites
Women in Journalism
Welcomes: Women working in print, broadcast and online,
at every stage of their careers, in the UK and overseas.
When it was founded: Eve Pollard
launched the association in 1994 – read more about the inspiration for its
What are the benefits of joining: Mentor
schemes, priority booking for WIJ events (future events planned include WIF Lit
Fests with authors Sam Baker and Claudia Winkleman) and job opportunities.
The Media Society
Welcomes: ‘Anyone with an interest in the media’ –
members include journalists, broadcasters and PRs.
When it was founded: 1973.
What are the benefits of joining: While
the coronavirus pandemic has put a hold on The Media Society’s events for now,
membership grants access to big hitters in the industry with knowledge to share.
The London Press Club
Welcomes: Journalists and others interested in the
media (students, printers, designers, cartoonists, producers).
When it was founded: Its inaugural dinner at Anderton’s Hotel in Fleet Street was held in 1882.
What are the benefits of joining: The Club keeps its
members updated on new developments and issues in the media and is known for
its social events, from its annual ball to monthly drinks.
Society of Editors
Welcomes: Editors – managing, editorial, training,
in-chiefs and deputies working across national, regional and local newspapers, magazines,
radio, television, education, digital and legal media.
When it was founded: 1999.
What are the benefits of joining: Monthly news updates,
networking and events, advice and support, as well as discounts on conferences,
books and Commonwealth Press Union Media Trust membership.
Association of European Journalists
Welcomes: Staff and freelance contributors to
television, radio, national, regional and specialist newspapers and periodicals
as well as digital media.
When it was founded: 1962.
What are the benefits of joining: The AEJ supports
press freedom, fact-based reporting and commentary free of political, religious
and commercial bias – membership grants advance notice of upcoming events and
lunchtime briefings and access to seminars and press events.
Welcomes: Journalists, and their dependents, who are going
through difficult times.
When it was founded: In 1864[JO2]
(by Charles Dickens, no less)
What are the benefits of joining: Committed to offering
help and guidance to journalists across all ages and backgrounds, the
association can provide access to confidential advice, emergency support and
financial assistance. Career development opportunities are also offered in networking
events and its awards for those demonstrating outstanding contributions to
If there are associations, unions, or support groups
you’ve found particularly useful during your career in the media that we can
highlight, please do get in
touch and let us know.
Send a request for what you need to finish features,
review round-ups and more with the Journalist Enquiry Service, a complimentary resource
for UK media professionals: try it