Journalists in south London today begin a 12-day strike over pay and conditions. Some of the NUJ members employed on the Newsquest titles are not paid the London Living Wage, despite the company’s boss being paid £7.5m a year – a sum which would pay th …

NUJ local news mattersJournalists in south London today begin a 12-day strike over pay and conditions.

Some of the NUJ members employed on the Newsquest titles are not paid the London Living Wage, despite the company’s boss being paid £7.5m a year – a sum which would pay the salaries of 454 reporters – and the company making profits of £52.8m.

They are demanding a 3% pay rise at titles including The Croydon Guardian, Sutton Guardian, Epsom Guardian, Wimbledon Guardian, Wandsworth Guardian, Balham and Tooting Guardian, Mitcham and Morden Guardian, Kingston Guardian, Surrey Comet, Elmbridge Comet, the Richmond & Twickenham Times, and the News Shopper series covering Dartford, Swanley,  Lewisham, Catford, Greenwich, Gravesham, Bexley and Bromley.

The South London Guardian chapel said: “Our papers hold those in power to account, provide a voice to local residents and fight the rights of some of the most vulnerable people in society. If local newspapers are not properly staffed, important stories will be go unreported and residents will be left in the dark.

“We are calling for Newsquest to invest in the communities it purports to serve. If you’re concerned about your local paper, please take five minutes to let the company know.”

NUJ organiser Laura Davison said: “Our chapels are determined to make the strongest possible case to management that they have had enough of the cuts, low pay and oppose the restructuring. They will be reaching out to their readers, asking them to support their local newspaper and quality journalism, speaking to local and national politicians and will be calling on fellow trade unionists to show their solidarity.”


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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