NATIONAL UNION of Journalists members at a series of Bradford-based papers have voted to take strike action. The journalists, who have only recently won union recognition, planned to strike on three days this month.
They were due to stay away from work on Wednesday morning, and then all day on Friday 25 and Thursday 31 January unless management increases a 2.5 percent pay offer. In a ballot more than 80 percent of journalists voted for strike action. At a well attended union meeting last week just one person voted against the walkouts.
The company’s managing director was given permission to address the meeting, but his appeal for journalists to accept the 2.5 percent offer failed to win people over.
The papers are owned by Newsquest-the UK arm of US media giant Gannett. Last year Newsquest (Bradford) made £6 million profit. The titles affected by the strike include Bradford’s Telegraph and Argus, Keighley News, Ilkley Gazette, the Craven Herald in Skipton, and the Wharfedale Observer.
JOURNALISTS AT the Independent voted last week to hold a ballot on action if management push any more job cuts. The vote came at a 100- strong union meeting held on the newspaper’s premises during work time.
Such a meeting would have been impossible until we recently won union recognition again after years of being derecognised. The meeting came after seven job cuts were announced by management, though they have promised there will be no more job cuts this financial year. But the meeting and the overwhelming vote are another sign that the tide is turning in the media and print industries, and that the unions are coming back.
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