Socialist Worker

South Yorkshire journalists: 'We decided that enough is enough'

Issue No. 2262

Journalists in South Yorkshire are entering their second week of an indefinite strike against management attacks on their working conditions and jobs.

The 40 members of the NUJ union walked out after a unanimous strike vote.

They’ve been picketing workers, leafleting, petitioning and speaking at other workers’ meetings.

Darren Burke has worked for the Johnston Press group that owns the titles for 17 years. He is now a features editor. He told Socialist Worker, “We just decided that enough is enough. People have watched cutbacks and redundancies lead to extra workloads and extra problems.”

The workers are now threatened with further job cuts and office closures at the Selby Times, Doncaster Free Press and South Yorkshire Times.

Logistics

The workers only had a week to organise the logistics of the strike before it started.

Darren said, “We had lots of people getting things organised. And the solidarity has been great. We’ve had support from the local branches of many unions, including RMT, CWU, Unite and Unison.

“People have organised collections and people have come to visit our picket lines. Even the Coronation Street actor Chris Walker came to sign the petition. Our readers have brought us bacon sandwiches and coffee.

“We’ve started to produce a news sheet with news from the strike and the local area. We go head-to-head with the Doncaster Free Press.

“Usually most of our reporters are desk-bound.

“But now they get to cover the things they usually don’t have time to.”

The workers are determined. But management has so far failed to negotiate with the union. Darren said, “Management know where we are when they want to talk.”

Send messages of support to darrenpburke@gmail.com and donations to account name DFP NUJ Chapel, no: 35630388, sort code: 60-06-39


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Article information

News
Tue 26 Jul 2011, 18:32 BST
Issue No. 2262
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