News Union sues employer over layoffs

Many folks don't realize that news biz is unionized

The Memphis Newspaper Guild Local 33091 has filed a National Labor Relations Board charge against The Commercial Appeal involving the most recent lay-offs. Guild members had entered into talks with newspaper executives in an effort to relieve some of the hardships faced by employees affected by the layoffs.

In bargaining sessions with the company on June 10, Guild representatives asked for more bargaining before layoffs were initiated. Guild representatives were told the company had not set a final list of who would be laid off.

Two days later, 30 people lost their jobs and were escorted out of the building. The remainder of the layoffs were completed before the next bargaining session. The CA has so far offered no insurance beyond the end of the month, no severance pay beyond the accrued pension benefits, and no bumping or re-employment rights beyond that any member of the public would have. The employees are considered terminated, not laid off.

The Memphis Newspaper Guild is a union that represents employees in the accounting, advertising, circulation, editorial and maintenance departments at The Commercial Appeal.


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