'No consent' given to name teenager seriously injured at burning of Eleventh Night bonfire

The family of a 17 year-old boy badly injured at the burning of an Eleventh Night bonfire in the Ballysillan area of north Belfast have asked the public and local media to respect his right to privacy.

Tuesday, 13th July 2021, 1:49 pm
An image of the Ballysillan bonfire from social media.
An image of the Ballysillan bonfire from social media.

The teenager, who suffered burns to both his body and face, was treated at the scene by members of Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service before he was taken to hospital, where his condition is described as critical.

The mother of the boy said via a spokesperson she did not give any individual or media organisation permission to name her son or publish details of his condition.

A statement was issued on behalf of the injured boy's mother by JWB Consultancy, a group run by loyalist activist, Jamie Bryson that specialises in public relations and legislation.

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"The injured party is a child and therefore should not be named by the media.

"Any media who have named the child, given there was no consent, neither implied nor express, provided by the child's mother should take urgent remedial steps in so far is as possible - such as amending any online articles," said JWB Consultancy.

Mr. Bryson's group also stated: "Accordingly, this statement on behalf of the family should should be treated as a request to desist, within the ambit of Clause 3 (ii) of the Editors' Code."

JWB Consultancy also confirmed it had submitted a formal application to IPSO (media regulator) to issue a formal Private Advisory Notice.

A spokesperson for the PSNI said: "As a result of the incident, he sustained burns to his face and body.

“Our enquiries are continuing to establish the circumstances surrounding the incident.

"We are aware that there were a number of people in the area at the time of the incident, so we would appeal to them to come forward to assist with our enquiries."

The spokesperson added: “We are also aware of social media footage that has been posted online in relation to this incident.

"We would ask that it is not shared, but to contact police with any information they might have."

The boy remains in an intensive care unit in the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast.


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