Greek Australian radio journalist Eurydice Aroney and her partner Tom Morton have been nominated for The Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards, for their investigative radio piece, ‘Shutting Down Sharleen.’
Sex workers in Germany have listened to it, and HIV workers in the UK, because these are communities that use online a lot.
Ms Aroney said she was pleased the piece had been nominated for the $15 000 John Curtin Prize for Journalism. “This is fantastic because I want more people to know about Sharleen, and the public hysteria around the public health area,” she said. Ms Aroney worked for around two years, with Tom Morton, research assistant Justine Greenwood and sound engineer Timothy Macastri, to tell the story of Sharleen Spiteri. “The story is about a sex worker who was HIV positive and went on 60 Minutes and said she was HIV positive, then spent the next 14 years under surveillance from the NSW government to keep her away from talking to the press about it,” she said. The piece has been broadcast on ABC Radio National and is available online, where Ms Aroney said it has received a wide audience. “Sex workers in Germany have listened to it, and HIV workers in the UK, because these are communities that use online a lot,” she said. Ms Aroney, who is a senior lecturer in journalism at University of Technology Sydney (UTS) and a Walkley Award winner, said she hoped to continue working with the story in other mediums. Also on the list of nominees are Annabel Crabb’s Quarterly Essay, Stop at Nothing: The Life and Adventures of Malcolm Turnbull, and Janine Cohen and Liz Jackson’s ABC 4 Corners piece, Who Killed Mr Ward? “Radio is the poor cousin, it’s not as glamorous, it doesn’t have the high profile of TV or even print, especially in long-form journalism,” she said. But Ms Aroney said she hoped listeners to the program would learn something about the complexities of Australia’s ‘risk-management’ policy approach to people living with HIV. “Australia is looked at as a gold standard for HIV, but that comes at a cost and that cost is Sharleen,” she said. The winners of The Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards will be announced on September 28 at the Wheeler Centre located at the State Library of Victoria in Melbourne. Shutting Down Charleen is available online at http://www.abc.net.au/rn/hindsight/stories/2010/2848373.htm Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram