NUJ members at regional newspapers in Cheshire and Merseyside take action over compulsory redundancies

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Journalists in Cheshire and Merseyside are on on their second day of strike action in response to the threat of compulsory redundancies at their newspapers.

The dispute involves NUJ members at the Newsquest titles Warrington Guardian, Northwich Guardian, Sale and Altrincham Messenger, St Helens Star and The Wirral Globe.

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary said: “Newsquest’s profit-at-all costs approach is a blow to journalism and the economy throughout the UK. We want to negotiate with the company and strike action is a last resort in response to the cuts. We support the strike to defend jobs and newspaper titles and call on Newsquest to listen to the concerns of its hard-working and dedicated staff.”

Newsquest has carried through most of the 7 job losses previously announced but there are a number of appeals against the redundancies still to be heard later this week.

The union wants to stop the redundancies and if the cuts go ahead it will be impossible to produce quality papers and compete with company rivals such as Trinity Mirror.

The chapel is calling on the company to enter into dialogue with the union on how to deal with the new workloads if the redundancies are carried through in full. The union wants to prevent breaches in the Working Time Directive and reduce health and safety risks.

Chris Morley, NUJ northern and midlands organiser, said: “Chapel negotiators held last gasp talks with management yesterday to try to prevent this action but it was clear the company had no real intention of trying to understand, never mind meet, the chapel’s desperate concerns.

“Our members have been resolute in not only seeking to defend colleagues but also the quality newspapers and websites they produce and they are prepared to make this sacrifice to underline to the company that its ruinous cost-cutting cannot continue. The strike is absolutely solid.

“A halt must be called now to the never-ending flow of cuts that is driving morale in the company into the ground and undermining the future for all who remain.”


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