The journalists of three Gannett-owned publications in New York state’s Hudson Valley voted 32 to 4 to join The NewsGuild of New York Local 31003 in an election supervised by the National Labor Relations Board. The new unit covers approximately 45 people at The Journal News, Poughkeepsie Journal and Times, and Herald-Record. Votes were tallied on Friday.
Workers announced in July that they were forming the Hudson Valley News Guild to fight for job security and for greater protections against reductions in staff and cuts to wages and benefits.
“All of us at the Hudson Valley News Guild should be proud of our win today,” said Lana Bellamy, a reporter for the Times Herald-Record. “We have yet again demonstrated our commitment to each other and our communities to strengthen our newsrooms so that we can provide quality local journalism. We look forward to bargaining our first contract.”
Poughkeepsie Journal reporter Geoff Wilson added, “Today marks another decisive victory for the Hudson Valley News Guild. We stood together against Gannett when the company tried to break up our unit, and we will continue to fight as we enter bargaining. Our communities and our elected officials have shown overwhelming support for us, and we will work together to make our newsrooms the best they can be.”
Susan DeCarava, president of the NY Guild, put the win in perspective. “Building worker power in the Gannett chain — the nation’s largest — will strengthen local news and lift standards across the industry and that is good for everyone,” she said. “I look forward to Gannett management coming to the table without delay so that we can begin negotiations for a first contract that respects both the voice of these workers and the interests of readers.”
Members of the Hudson Valley News Guild join thousands of media professionals across the U.S. and Canada who have organized with The NewsGuild-CWA to preserve and protect their local news outlets.
Theirs is the 11th union victory at Gannett-owned publications in the last two years and the fifth in 2021.
The Guild’s recent Gannett union organizing victories include:
- On Aug. 11, 2021, staffers at the Atlantic Digital Optimization Team (DOT) voted to form the Atlantic DOT Guild. They work across a five-state region that comprises 37 websites in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland.
- On May 7, 2021, workers at The Bergen Record, The New Jersey Herald, and The Daily Record voted in favor of forming the Record Guild.
- On Feb. 24, 2021, workers at the Austin American-Statesman voted to form the Austin NewsGuild. They are part of the Media Guild of the West Local 39213.
- On Feb. 17, 2021, journalists of The Desert Sun voted in favor of forming The Desert Sun NewsGuild. They are part of the Media Guild of the West.
- On Aug. 18, 2020, staffers at the Delaware News Journal and Delaware Online voted to form the Delaware News Guild. They are part of the NewsGuild of Greater Philadelphia Local 38010.
- On June 23, 2020, workers at the Palm Beach Post and Palm Beach Daily News voted to form the Palm Beach News Guild. They are part of CWA Local 3108.
- Also on June 23, 2020, staffers at the Fort Myers News-Press and Naples Daily News voted to form the Southwest Florida News Guild. They are part of CWA Local 3108.
- On Feb. 5, 2020, journalists of the South Bend Tribune voted to form the South Bend NewsGuild. They are part of the Chicago News Guild Local 34071.
- On Jan. 31, 2020, staffers at the Springfield News-Leader in Missouri voted to form the Springfield News Guild. They are part of the United Media Guild Local 36047.
- On Oct. 10, 2019, workers at the Arizona Republic voted to form the Arizona Republic Guild. They are part of the Media Guild of the West Local 39213.
Two union organizing campaigns at Gannett-owned publications are pending.
- Last month, workers at the Asbury Park Press and Courier News/Home News Tribune in New Jersey announced that they are forming the APP-MCJ Guild as part of the NY Guild. More than 70 percent of eligible employees signed on to the effort.
- Journalists of the Kent Record-Courier in Northeast Ohio announced in July that they are forming the RC NewsGuild. They will join the NewsGuild of Northeast Ohio Local 34001.