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WBNGWashington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild (Washington, DC)
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A week after The Baltimore Sun slashed 60 newsroom jobs, including 18 top editing positions, some 50 newsroom staffers still at the paper have launched a one-day byline strike, according to the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild.
Ask Rick Weiss, a staff writer and the news-side co-chair of the Post Guild unit, or Rick Ehrmann, the local representative of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, why the deal was put on the table, and they answer "cost-cutting" with not a doubt in their minds.
29, still must be agreed to by members of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild. The greatest disagreement between union members and the Post has centered on the ability for members to leave the union at any time.
The contract with Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild was scheduled to expire at the end of June and management approached the union early with an offer that freezes wages for the first two years but offers an increase in 401(k) retirement savings from 2-1/2 percent to 3-1/2 percent.
The Sun did not disclose how many people lost their jobs, but the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild says 37 people were let go Wednesday.
"Some people in small communities could care less, but in Washington there's enough newspaper-reading wonks that do care who's writing what," says Rick Weiss, co-chairman of the Washington Post's unit of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild and a science reporter at the Post.
The Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild also is concerned about The Post's desire to install hidden surveillance cameras on-site, Editor & Publisher reported.
Bankruptcy Trustee as well as the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, which represents workers at Tribune's Baltimore Sun.
Montgomery "Monty" Cook announced the moves in a staff meeting this afternoon, said Brent Jones, a Sun reporter and a unit chair with the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild.
Connie Knox, president of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild and a Sun copy editor, says the union has unsuccessfully attempted in the last three contracts it negotiated with Sun managers to incorporate language on job-sharing.
But Sun reporter Bill Salganik, president of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, and Zachary Dowdy, president of Newsday's Graphic Communications Conference Local 406, said more cuts in the face of recent past buyouts at both papers, and other Tribune properties such as the Los Angeles Times, are unsettling.
"I don't have any argument with a company that's failing trying to get back up on its feet," says David Bates of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, which is negotiating a contract with Baltimore's Sun, a Times Mirror paper.
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