A Basildon Echo journalist has been nominated for the Paul Foot award for campaigning journalism for the newspaper's coverage of the Dale Farm evictions. Jon Austin was behind a string of exclusives on the eviction of the UK's largest Travellers' camp in Essex on 18 and 19 October. Austin is shortlisted for the award alongside the Guardian's Nick Davies, who uncovered the phone-hacking scandal, and the Sunday Times journalists Jonathan Calvert and Claire Newell for their exposé of Fifa corruption. The Paul Foot award, which was established by Private Eye and the Guardian, is an annual prize in memory of the journalist and campaigner who died in 2004. Nine journalists are shortlisted for the award, to be presented at a ceremony in London on 28 February. Awards organisers said the nominees were "recognised for their dogged pursuit of difficult stories – exposés that demonstrate how investigative journalism in Britain is still alive and kicking and, today more than ever perhaps, in need of support". The Observer journalist Mark Townsend was nominated for his investigation into modern-day slavery and exploitation of women and children trafficked into the UK. Townsend is credited with prompting a public outcry so great that it influenced the government pledge to support child victims in its proposed anti-human trafficking strategy. Katharine Quarmby, former news editor of Disability Now magazine, is shortlisted for her four-year investigation into disability hate crime. Quarmby has written more than 40 articles on the issue for titles including the Guardian, Times and Mail on Sunday. The Chemist and Druggist magazine journalist Zoe Smeaton has been nominated for her Fight for Fairness campaign on government payment errors to community pharmacists. The Independent's Jerome Taylor is shortlisted after the newspaper became the first media organisation to be granted sole access to a court of protection battle involving a young man taken out of the care of his long-term foster mother by a local authority. The landmark case meant that the media can access private court of protection cases even if those at the heart of the disputes are not public figures. Mail on Sunday journalist David Rose was shortlisted for a piece in the paper's Live magazine that questioned why the UK was still sending millions of pounds in aid to India when the country's economy was booming. Last year's Paul Foot award was won by Clare Sambrook for her investigation into the plight of the children of asylum seekers.