Cabin Radio initially blocked from press conference by embattled N.W.T. MLA

·2 min read
Tu Nedhé-Wiilideh MLA Steve Norn is set to speak to media today about a sole adjudicator recommending his removal over breaching COVID-19 health rules and making inaccurate statements about it to the media. (Mario De Ciccio/Radio-Canada - image credit)
Tu Nedhé-Wiilideh MLA Steve Norn is set to speak to media today about a sole adjudicator recommending his removal over breaching COVID-19 health rules and making inaccurate statements about it to the media. (Mario De Ciccio/Radio-Canada - image credit)

Tu Nedhé-Wiilideh MLA Steve Norn says Cabin Radio reporters aren't welcome at a press conference he is holding this afternoon due to what he refers to as "bullying and hate" online.

Media in the Northwest Territories were notified Thursday afternoon by the Legislative Assembly that Norn would be holding a virtual press conference at 4 p.m.

The notice came after the adjudicator appointed to investigate Norn's conduct in relation to several violations of COVID-19 health rules recommended his expulsion and that his seat be declared vacant.

In an email to Cabin Radio that was shared with CBC, a staff member at the legislature declined to give Cabin Radio reporter Emily Blake the information needed to access the virtual press conference. Instead, she was told Norn "has advised that he does not want Cabin Radio to attend today's press conference," and to reach out to Norn directly to request a comment.

CBC has learned the Legislative Assembly has since provided Cabin Radio with the link to the press conference.

Ollie Williams, the head of programming and news for Cabin Radio, declined to comment on the situation or on Norn's comments to CBC.

Cabin Radio is the online news source which initially reported the conduct that made Norn the subject of the inquiry.

In an interview with CBC, Norn said he took issue with what he saw as bullying and hate online and on Cabin Radio's website.

"The other thing is, they don't have any oversight, they don't have a CRTC licence — quite frankly, I'm surprised they even have a press pass here at the [Legislative Assembly]," he said.

He added if a Cabin Radio reporter does attend the press conference, they will be "persona non grata if they're in the room."

The CRTC, the Canada Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, regulates Canadian broadcasting. It does not routinely monitor journalism or journalistic content.

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