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Strike action suspended at Midlands newspapers

Threatened strike action at some of Trinity Mirror’s newspapers in the Midlands has been suspended after assurances that no-one will be forced to lose their job.

National Union of Journalists members at Birmingham, Coventry and Midland Weekly Media threatened industrial action if the company tried to make staff compulsorily redundant.

Now the union says it has received assurances from management this will not happen, meaning the strike planned for next Tuesday and Wednesday has been put on hold by the Birmingham chapel.

NUJ members at Coventry and Midland Weekly Media chapels will make their own decisions on the action today.

The row comes after August’s announcement by Trinity Mirror that around 65 jobs were to go and 300 editorial staff would have to reapply for positions in a major shake-up of operations at titles such as the Coventry Telegraph and Birmingham Post.

NUJ northern organiser Chris Morley said: “While it is to be welcomed that the company has now backed down from the threat of issuing compulsory redundancy notices, we can take no comfort from the fact that a quarter of Trinity Mirror’s journalists in the Midlands do not have sufficient confidence in the projected future to want to stay.

“The people volunteering are not only those at the latter end of their careers but also many in their 20s and 30s.

“Where the new digital multimedia world should be exciting for those starting off in their careers, instead many are being put off by the prospect of gross overloading of tasks.

“They’re concerned that by serving so many platforms simultaneously, the essence of their journalism will be lost.

“This rush for the exit only confirms the NUJ chapels’ determination to win a comprehensive agreement on new multimedia working, together with proper reward for new skills that will bring back confidence of remaining staff in the future direction of the company.”

Steve Brown, managing director of Trinity Mirror Midlands, said: “We were committed to the objective of trying to avoid compulsory redundancies and we’re extremely pleased to have delivered this.

“We have worked hard towards achieving this goal and we are delighted that strike action has been avoided.

“We will continue to strive to create a solid and workable platform for the hundreds of journalists and other staff who will be part of the business going forward.”


Anadin man (03/10/2008 21:52:35)
yep it’s true. sell out by my colleagues. all set to strike a month ago but now all kow-towing to the beaknik bosses now they know they’ve all got jobs. hmm. let’s see. there’s a few mustard splashes in the mix yet to put a few things right… change from within!