NY Times Layoffs Begin

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By Chris O'Shea Comments

Those layoffs at The New York Times that we’ve been hearing about have officially begun. According to a memo from the Newspaper Guild of New York, the Times is cutting 21 union members, and employees will get notice today or tomorrow.

With 57 union members and about 30 non-union members accepting a buyout, the Times will exceed its stated goal of reducing the newsroom by 100.

“Discharged employees will be presented with a severance package and will likely be told that their last day of work is sometime this week, possibly even the day they are given the news,” stated the Guild’s note. “Regardless of when their last day is, most terminated employees will receive two weeks of notice pay. Employees hired before May 1, 1994, can be offered an additional 15 weeks of work or paid out for the time.”

Keep your heads up, everyone.

The Guild’s full memo is below.

Despite having announced its target of reducing newsroom staff by 100 – and accepting the buyout applications of 57 Guild members and nearly 30 excluded employees – The Times told the Guild on Monday that it would lay off another 21 Guild-represented employees this week. Whatever the total (the number of excluded employees to be laid off is not known at this time), the company clearly will exceed its stated goal of 100 job cuts.

Any employee called into meet with management who would like a Guild representative to be present, or who just wants to talk, is welcome to call Unit Chair Grant Glickson at ext. 1030 or (732) 685-5018, Grievance Chair Mindy Matthews at ext. 1751 or (908) 397-3305, or Guild Representative Anthony Napoli at (212) 730-1508.

Management’s decision to exceed its announced goal of 100 newsroom job cuts comes after it turned down the buyout requests of threeGuild-represented employees, hired numerous new employees over past six months and made no effort to retrain long-term employees. Since the Guild and The Times settled the current contract in November 2012, union membership has increased by 100.

Management is expected to deliver the layoff news to targeted employees on Tuesday and Wednesday. Discharged employees will be presented with a severance package and will likely be told that their last day of work is sometime this week, possibly even the day they are given the news. Regardless of when their last day is, most terminated employees will receive two weeks of notice pay. Employees hired before May 1, 1994, can be offered an additional 15 weeks of work or paid out for the time.

In the coming days and weeks, the Guild will examine all possible alternatives to the layoffs. The Guild also will study all information management used to target employees to make sure that the contract was followed. If any violations are found, the Guild will take all necessary steps to enforce the contract.