Support Swindon Advertiser strike!
STAFF at the Swindon Advertiser went on a two-day strike right at the start of 2018 following the announcement just before Christmas that the group web editor, news editor and three content managers based at Swindon were at risk of redundancy in a restructure.
The NUJ website noted that "The Advertiser chapel (the NUJ unit of organisation within Swindon-based Newsquest titles) has been engaged in talks over pay with Newsquest senior management since November 2016, including talks brokered by the conciliation service ACAS earlier last year, during which members have been stonewalled at every level. Despite statements given to the press from Newsquest saying that meaningful talks with NUJ representatives would take place in a bid to avert the strike, the company has failed to respond to several invitations.".
NUJ London Freelance Branch at its AGM passed an emergency motion in support of the Swindon Advertiser. Speaking to the motion, Branch Treasurer Jenny Vaughan noted that local papers like the Advertiser are "dying on their feet" with their journalists working "for poverty pay, ridiculously understaffed... local folk don't know what's happening." The meeting raised over £150 in a collection towards the strike fund.
A Swindon Advertiser worker who went on the two-day strike responded to LFB via Twitter to say, "Thank you so much. The fund will take some of the sting out of #Newsquest deductions from our already meagre pay packet this month."
Watch this space and www.nuj.org.uk for news of the dispute. You can Tweet support to @Adverstrike and contribute to the strike fund at: Unity Trust Bank, account name: NUJ Wiltshire Branch, account number: 35016904, bank sort code: 608301.