Karen Reissmann is suspended from work and in the middle of a six day disciplinary hearing accused of bringing the Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust into disrepute.
She has agreed to speak at a rally to mark Stand Up for Journalism day on Monday November 5.
The day - called to coincide with the Society of Editors conference in Manchester - will be marked by a two-minute work stoppage by media workers in Serbia, a demonstration outside the National Assembly in Paris, a petition to the government in Romania, and other activities all over Europe.
Stand Up for Journalism day was thought-up by the National Union of Journalists in Britain and Ireland as a way of highlighting poor working conditions and dwindling budgets in the news media.
There are events all over the UK and Ireland and the union nationally is organising a lunchtime lobby of the editor’s conference at the Radisson Hotel, Peter Street, Manchester, followed by a public meeting in the Friends Meeting House, on nearby Mount Street, where Karen Reissman will speak.
Karen, a UNISON trade union official, and a community psychiatric nurse who lives in Hulme in South Manchester, and is based for work in North Manchester General Hospital, was suspended in June after she was quoted in a Manchester-based magazine called Enterprising.
She was criticising the government policy of transferring some health services to the voluntary sector.
Karen’s colleagues believe she is being victimised for her trade union activity and they have been on strike for 11 days to back her - with at least three more days planned. UNISON - Britain’s second biggest union - is giving them full support.
Karen said: “I believe that people need to know what is happening in the health service so they can make informed decisions about their lives, and at election times.
“I am worried that cuts to editorial budgets mean that vital stories will stay secret and will not be explained.”
This year’s NUJ President Michelle Stanistreet, who works for the Sunday Express, said: “We are delighted to invite Karen to our rally and to support her campaign against victimisation.
“It is important that there are people brave enough to tell the public what is happening in the NHS and that there are experienced journalists for them to talk to.
“The media is now owned by a smaller and smaller group of extremely wealthy corporations.
“They make big profits but they want more. So journalists face a constant round of job cuts and dwindling editorial budgets. This means that more and more news is just recycled press releases.
“We want our editors to join with us and stand up to the culture of cuts. If they believe that journalism is important for democracy and for local communities they must take a stand.
“They are meeting on a site that was developed to commemorate the Peterloo massacre - when demonstrators were killed by state troopers. We hope they will take courage from history and seize the moment. ”
For information about Stand Up for Journalism see:
For information about Karen Reissmann see: