Monday, June 16, 2014

SJ-R reporter fails to disclose conflict of interest, endangers disabled citizen

Illinois Review reports:
Writing a one-sided news piece and inadvertently or purposefully failing to disclose a possible conflict interest often results in a journalist losing his or her job. In a culture that harbors deep and growing mistrust with legacy media, such a violation of public trust can be another nail in the coffin of the dying mainstream news sources.

Failing to disclose conflict of interest is the first thing State Journal Register's senior reporter Dean Olsen did in a story he wrote about the Illinois-based Harris vs Quinn case currently before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Olsen, as Illinois Mirror reports, is a union organizer affiliated with AFSCME - the public sector union that wants to require all state-assisted, home-based caretakers to be forced to be union members ... even when they care for family members.

In 2013, Olsen, an SJ-R staff writer and chairman of the Springfield Unit of the United Media Guild, was cheered as he explained to AFSCME Local 2600 how the Springfield Journal Register was unionized months before.

The second egregious offense Olsen committed is revealing personal information in the article.

The Harris vs Quinn plaintiff is Pam Harris, the mother of an adult disabled son. Harris receives a stipend from the state each month to help defray expenses of caring for her dependent son in their home. Pam's full-time job is caring for Josh, and she says she was compelled to find an attorney and file suit when Governor Pat Quinn handed over her family's private information to union seeking her membership.
Just a reminder.