Friday, June 13, 2008

Ignored while bosses sip champagne

NUJ representatives today leafleted outside the Press Gazette Regional Press Awards to raise awareness for members currently taking action in York.

Staff at The Press helped their paper to a nomination in the Scoop Of The Year category, but were not invited to the awards - only the management attended.

NUJ Assistant Organiser, Jenny Lennox, said: "It is shameful that managers from Newsquest York are in London sipping champagne while their staff are struggling on low pay. To not even reward the journalists who earned them the nomination shows the contempt they have for their staff.

"The papers should recognise their award-winning staff and give them award-winning pay deals, not below inflation pay rises and worse deals than other titles."

Journalists at Newsquest-owned titles in York have been continuing their action this week by holding mandatory chapel meetings. Despite threats from management that any journalist who was late for work would be sent home without pay, yesterday's inaugural meeting was well attended.

NUJ members met for seven-and-a-half hours from 8am and returned to work en-masse after discussing ways to take their protests further. The managing director then sent home journalists from the morning shifts with no pay but those on the late shifts were allowed to stay and receive a full-day's pay.

Subsequent meetings have been put on hold as management have agreed to mediation through ACAS.

Pay campaign in the House

Our Early Day Motion (EDM) in the House of Commons continues to go from stength to strength - with 24 MPs now signed up. The latest members to have signed EDM 1639 are Labour MPs: Tony Lloyd, David Anderson, Colin Burgon, Alan Simpson, David Hamilton, and Rudi Vis, plus Liberal Democrat Bob Russell.

To view the full text of the EDM 1639, click
here. If your MP isn't listed, please urge them to sign the EDM by contacting them through

We have also been boosted this week by a £200 donation from South Yorkshire NUJ Branch towards our strike fund - a magnificent sum, so thanks go to our colleagues there.