Unions have called off planned strike action at the BBC having negotiated a settlement with bosses. BECTU and NUJ members were concerned over the corporation’s plans to cut jobs, which would have affected 500 people in News and the World Service, and t …

Tim Lezard Europe, UK, Media, BECTU, UK unions,

BBCUnions have called off planned strike action at the BBC having negotiated a settlement with bosses.

BECTU and NUJ members were concerned over the corporation’s plans to cut jobs, which would have affected 500 people in News and the World Service, and then create 266 new posts.

Now they’ve reached a deal with managers that will see a moratorium on compulsory redundancies until March, no voluntary redundancies to leave before December and a wider strategic review on the BBC’s structures and management layers.

BECTU assistant general secretary Luke Crawley said: “We are obviously very pleased that good sense has prevailed in BBC News. The dispute, which is now resolved, could have been avoided had News management decided at the outset to honour the substantial agreements on redeployment which we have.

“The moratorium on compulsory redundancies will give us the breathing space to work through these proposals in detail. The fact that BBC News is prepared to give this commitment should mean we can begin to repair the damage to staff relations created by management’s earlier decision to sidestep established agreements.

“Workplace reorganisation is not solely about work, it’s about the people who do that work and it’s regrettable that BBC News management lost sight of the needs of staff in recent months.”

NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said: “We’re pleased that common sense has prevailed and that a sensible solution has been negotiated following talks with Tony Hall.

“NUJ members are deeply concerned that the proposed job cuts will have a devastating impact on their ability to produce quality content. That NUJ members were prepared to take strike action is a measure of that concern, and a reflection of how low morale at the corporation has fallen.

“That the management within News now have to come up with their plan as to how posts can be lost without burdening already over-stretched journalists is a sensible step forward. A moratorium on compulsory redundancies and a proper process to deal with assessments of workloads is good news for NUJ members, and good news for the viewing public.”


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
Author avatar

Tim Lezard

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

Read All Articles