U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

Police and private security prevent journalists from covering protests at JFK airport

Incident Details

REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

Port Authority Police Officers stand guard outside Terminal 4 during a protest against Donald Trump's travel ban at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, NY, on Jan. 28, 2017.

— REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
January 28, 2017

On Jan. 28, 2017, protesters across the country flocked to airports to protest President Donald Trump's executive order banning citizens of six Muslim-majority countries from traveling to the United States, and journalists raced to cover the protests.

In New York City, a focus of travel ban protests was John F. Kennedy airport's Terminal 4, which is the airport's main site for international arrivals. But journalists were prevented from going to the terminal to cover the protests, according to one reporter on the scene.

Charlotte Alter, a journalist at Time magazine, said that the terminal's private security forces, with assistance from New York police officers, blocked the entrance to Terminal 4, preventing journalists from documenting the protests and interviewing people affected by the ban.

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker catalogues press freedom violations in the United States. Email tips to [email protected].