Oct. 30, 2019 – Approximately 75 percent of employees of NBC News Digital have signed on to a union organizing drive, the NewsGuild of New York announced today.
In a letter presented by a delegation of staffers Wednesday morning, workers requested voluntary recognition of the union.
NBC News has come under intense scrutiny in recent weeks in the wake of accusations that executives killed major stories and failed to respond properly to allegations of internal harassment. The digital staff’s organizing campaign, which was originally sparked by similar accusations against the network in 2017, seeks to directly address issues like workplace safety and to secure a protected voice for journalists inside 30 Rock, employees said in the announcement.
The news also follows an announcement by management that about a dozen video journalists will lose their jobs with the elimination of the Left Field digital video team. The staff seeks to secure job security and a voice in the editorial direction of NBC News.
The announcement comes on the heels of dozens of successful organizing drives in newsrooms across the country, including many that were voluntarily recognized by management. They include The New Yorker, New York Magazine, BuzzFeed News, The New Republic, Mashable, PCMag, Pitchfork, Ars Technica, and Quartz, among others.
“NBC News is a storied name in journalism and we all feel proud to be a part of it,” said Nigel Chiwaya, Data Journalist. Unionizing “is our way of protecting the legacy for everyone here now and for those who will come after us. We are organizing to make our newsroom stronger and safer for all,” he said.
“NBC News is home to so many brilliant and talented journalists. We’re excited to meet NBC News at the negotiating table to demand the fair and equitable workplace we deserve. The past year has seen a wave of union victories in newsrooms across the country, and we’re excited to join them,” said Christine Nguyen, Video Producer.
“There is a voice that’s been missing from the conversation around NBC News lately, and it’s ours,” said.Tate James, Video Editor. “We’re unionizing to protect each other and hold the powerful accountable, both in our workplace and out.”
“The employees of NBC News are standing up for their newsroom,” said Grant Glickson, President of The NewsGuild of New York. “Management has a lot to prove to its staff. We urge NBC to recognize the union in order to start building back the trust of the staff and fostering a productive and collaborative bargaining relationship.”
More information can be found at nbcnewsguild.com.