Socialist Worker

Guardian workers force £500,000 out of management

Issue No. 2028

Members of the NUJ journalists’ union at the Guardian celebrated a victory last week after management offered a pay increase of 5.3 percent, which was weighted in favour of website journalists on low pay.

The 500-strong NUJ chapel (workplace union branch) agreed to end the pay dispute on Thursday of last week.

Journalists won a major concession on pensions, after management conceded that the company’s pension scheme needed a radical overhaul.

Workers had voted to ballot for industrial action. Management has revised its offer by addressing the pay disparity and promised to pay over £500,000 to bring web salaries closer to rates for journalist posts on the paper.

Staff will also receive a 3 percent pay increase.

Matt Seaton, the joint NUJ father of the chapel at the Guardian, said, “This is a resounding victory for the chapel who were determined to see an end to the two-tier workforce at the Guardian.”

John Henry Barac, an NUJ member at the Guardian, told Socialist Worker, “There is a general sense among people that this is a victory. We have won two out of three of our major demands.

“The union has become much stronger since the campaign began. The membership has grown enormously.

“In the last year since the change of format there have been big pay rises for top managers, and people felt that we should get some reward too. The quality of a newspaper and a strong unionised workforce go hand in hand.

“We voted unanimously to end our ballot over strike action because we had won huge concessions over major issues.”

NUJ journalists’ union members at the Southern Daily Echo in Southampton have won annual pay increase of £600 backdated to 1 July.

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Sat 25 Nov 2006, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 2028
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