Newsletter: Dallas Morning News Guild wins vote, Fort Worth goes Guild, more

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We continue to build and grow our union. On Friday, workers at @dallasnews and @AlDiaDallas voted 84 to 28 to unionize their newsrooms, in an exciting NLRB vote count over Zoom. As of today, they are one of a few unionized newsrooms in Texas. But not for long.

“Today is a huge win for the future of local journalism in Dallas and an important step in preserving the legacy of the Dallas Morning News and Al Día,” said business reporter Dom DiFurio. The vote will help the publications fulfill their mission of “conveying the truth of the ninth largest metro in the country,” he said. Follow the workers on Twitter here.

And last week, the journalists at The Fort Worth Star-Telegram launched a campaign to form a union to preserve and protect the newsroom they love. Read their announcement letter here.

If you haven’t already, follow the Fort Worth workers here and let them know why you support their union drive.

Last week, workers at Allentown’s Morning Call rallied around pregnant staff photographer Amy Shortell after Tribune Publishing gave her an ultimatum: Either go out on disability or have her hours cut in half. A GoFundMe page made up for Amy’s lost salary, raising more than $3,300. Tom Shortell, Amy’s husband, is a columnist for the Morning Call.

The Sacramento Bee workers released a statement pushing McClatchy to reconsider their plans for a pay-for-clicks model. A tweet from the workers quickly went viral and management reacted, claiming this was false — without any supporting details or correcting information. It’s the type of response we expect from corrupt politicians, not newsroom management.

Several New York newsrooms have won just cause in their contracts in the past two weeks. Just cause is a hallmark of NewsGuild contracts and journalists have fought for decades to be protected from arbitrary dismissals and discipline. As a union, we have a responsibility to fight management’s call for editorial exceptions. Those exceptions leave journalists exposed and unprotected.

First, workers at the New Yorker staged a virtual picket and convinced both Senator Elizabeth Warren and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to pull out of a planned New Yorker event. Days later, Condé Nast management folded and workers won just cause protections without an editorial exception.

Workers are fighting and winning just cause in other newsrooms: Buzzfeed News, Wirecutter, Ziff Davis and more.

And we have more fights to come!

Finally, congratulations to Alexis Johnson, who landed a new job at Vice Media. Alexis was sidelined from protest coverage by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s racist management. An #IStandWithAlexis movement exploded on Twitter, raising awareness of the racism journalists face inside our newsrooms. We will miss her in the Guild, but wish her well!

In solidarity,

Jon

President, NewsGuild-CWA

 

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