Journalists at 4 Washington State publications reach tentative agreement on a first contract

The bargaining committee of the Washington State NewsGuild reached a tentative agreement with management on a first contract on May 26. The agreement will cover journalists at four McClatchy-owned publications: the Bellingham Herald, Tri-City Herald, Tacoma News Tribune and Olympian.

The agreement follows about a year of bargaining. “Our members never stopped fighting to protect local news and for what they deserve,” members of the unit tweeted the day after the agreement was reached.

Highlights of the deal include:

  • Minimum salaries of $48K for current journalists
  • An end to two-tiered salary floors at papers
  • Guaranteed raises in second and third years of the agreement
  • Protections against outsourcing protections
  • Return to a 40-hour work week, which will result a large restoration of pay for union members

“We just want to say thank you to all of the community members and readers who have supported us and our fight for a fair contract, especially within this past week. We could not have done this without your help,” they said.

“We also want to say thank you to our fellow union colleagues across the company for all of their hard work, support and guidance, as we push toward better, more equitable and sustainable working conditions.”

The workers won recognition of the Washington State NewsGuild about 15 months ago. They organized to ensure that journalists of the four publications could continue to report on and serve their local communities. They are part of the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild Local 37082.

Public News Service Union wins recognition

The journalists of the Public News Service won voluntary recognition of their union on Tuesday.

“We’re thrilled that management @PNS_News has voluntarily recognized our union,” members of the Public News Service Union said in a tweet. “We look forward to negotiating our first contract and working with management to create a sustainable and equitable future for PNS.”

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After a 3-year journey, workers at Daily Kos win union recognition

After a nearly three-year organizing journey, workers at the Daily Kos won certification of their union on Wednesday. Recognition of the Daily Kos Guild became official when the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, an independent agency of the federal government, certified that 45 union members — about 80% of the unit — had signed cards indicating support for the union campaign. 

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The Hill’s newsroom employees announce union campaign

Journalists at The Hill announced Wednesday that they are unionizing. Newsroom employees filed for a union election with the National Labor Relations Board, but asked management and the publication’s new parent company to voluntarily recognize The Hill Guild. 

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Bozeman journalists vote for Yellowstone News Guild

The eight newsroom employees of the Bozeman Daily Chronicle voted unanimously on Tuesday to certify the Yellowstone News Guild. They will join the Denver Newspaper Guild Local 37074, which also includes the unionized employees of the Chronicle’s sister paper the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, the Montana News Guild in Billings, and unionized newsrooms in Colorado, Nebraska and Wyoming.

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NewsGuild strongly condemns the killing of Al Jazeera journalist in the West Bank

The NewsGuild-CWA strongly condemns the killing of Shireen Abu Akleh, a renowned Palestinian-American reporter for Al Jazeera. Abu Akleh was fatally shot on May 11 while covering an Israeli army raid in the occupied West Bank. The network reported that she was targeted by Israeli forces and shot in the head. Witnesses reported that she was wearing a press vest when she was shot. 

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University of North Carolina report examines upsurge in newsroom unionization

“According to NewsGuild, there was about a 500% jump in workers joining the NewsGuild union from 2017 to 2018.” 

Lauren Lindstrom saw the benefits of being part of a union during her four years as a reporter for the Toledo Blade, her first journalism job out of college, a recent study by the University of North Carolina reports.

“I learned first-hand from older journalists what working in a unionized newsroom looks like: Having each other’s backs, having more say in your workplace, better working conditions for journalists who have been suffering for years,” she said.

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