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Churches called on to back striking journalists

A Christian group has urged churches to support striking staff at Newsquest South London in their protest over redundancies which will see nine editorial jobs go.

David Campanale from Kingston & Richmond Christian Peoples Alliance claims the Surrey Comet, one of the titles affected, has a Christian history dating back 150 years and is urging local churches to speak up for the importance of local newspapers.

A message of support to the strikers posted on the group’s  website reads: “In a time of austerity, with cuts having a serious impact on the most vulnerable in our community, having a free press run by professional journalists cannot be lightly dispensed with.”

National Union of Journalists Mother-of-Chapel Thais Portilho-Shrimpton said: “We received a message from them yesterday and saw they had put a link on their website. It is obviously very welcome.