The Guardian appoints first Caribbean correspondent | The Guardian


The Guardian has appointed its first Caribbean correspondent, marking one year since the newspaper’s owner issued an apology for the role its founders played in transatlantic slavery.

The position – which is unique among UK news organisations – will focus on the underreported region, alongside a boost to coverage across Africa and South America.

Natricia Duncan will take up the new role, based in Jamaica. She said that despite the Caribbean’s “rich cultural tapestry, dynamic leaders and complex environmental and socioeconomic challenges, the region is often misunderstood, misrepresented, or ignored by global media”.

Duncan is one of seven new reporters appointed since Guardian News & Media published the Scott Trust Legacies of Enslavement report into the newspaper’s historical links with transatlantic slavery in March 2023.

Katharine Viner, the editor-in-chief of Guardian News & Media, said the roles were evidence of the Guardian’s long-term commitment to the work begun by the report and would help produce journalism that offers “a depth and breadth rarely seen in the western media”.

The independent academic research was published in March 2023 alongside an editorial project, Cotton Capital, and plans for a decade-long restorative justice programme with a pledge to invest more than £10m (US$12.3m, A$18.4m), with millions dedicated specifically to descendant communities linked to the Guardian’s 19th-century founders.

The Legacies of Enslavement programme is being designed and carried out in consultation with descendant communities, particularly in the south-eastern US and Jamaica. The research revealed that John Edward Taylor, and at least nine of his 11 backers, had benefited from transatlantic slavery, principally through textiles.

Alongside Duncan, there are two new Africa correspondents: Eromo Egbejule, who is based in Ivory Coast and will cover west Africa, and Carlos Mureithi, based in Kenya and will cover east Africa. Tiago Rogero joins as South America correspondent, based in Rio.

Another two reporters, Adria Walker and Melissa Hellmann, have joined the Guardian US race and equity team and Tobi Thomas is the Guardian’s health and inequalities correspondent in the UK.

Viner said: “The response to the Scott Trust’s findings last March was a watershed moment for the Guardian. The long-term commitment set out in the restorative justice plan is vital in our ongoing efforts to address these historical wrongs and to report more deeply on the lives and experiences of people of colour around the world.

“Our new Caribbean, South America and Africa correspondents will cover the urgent stories and issues affecting communities in these regions today, and with a depth and breadth rarely seen in the western media.”

The Scott Trust, the Guardian’s owner, has also appointed three additional members to its external advisory panel, who meet quarterly to guide the restorative programme of work, focusing on descendant communities from regions of the world that were most affected.

Ebony Riddell Bamber, the programme director of the legacies of enslavement programme, said: “The focus for the period ahead is to carry out further engagement with descendant communities and begin to develop concrete options for partnerships, as well as continuing to work closely with the Scott Trust, our advisory panel, and connecting with other organisations and institutions advancing restorative and reparative justice efforts.”

The update is published after a survey showed six in 10 people in Britain believe Caribbean nations and descendants of enslaved people should receive a formal apology from the government, the royal family or firms that profited from exploitation.

Duncan, a native of St Vincent and the Grenadines said: “Coming from a small island in the Caribbean, I understand the importance of giving voice to those who feel marginalised and invisible. It is a great privilege to be part of the Guardian’s historic move to ensure the Caribbean gets the coverage it deserves.”

Cotton Capital, the Guardian’s series on the legacies of transatlantic enslavement, will publish new journalism in the weeks ahead.

This includes the Guardian documentary Buried, which explores the discovery of a vast burial ground on the island of St Helena – one of the most significant traces of the transatlantic slave trade in the world – as well as stories exploring memorialisation and culture in the US Sea Islands and Jamaica.



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