Newsday Asks Employees For ‘Horrible and Unprecedented’ Concessions

Newsday’s union representing editorial employees has sent out a memo detailing a tentative agreement between management and the union. In it, the union essentially agrees that the company is asking for a lot, that the union did the best it could but members still hate the proposed contract, and that the new contract is “horrible and unprecedented.”

The concessions include a 10 percent pay cut for everyone(!), an increase to a 40-hour workweek, the dissolution of seniority rules, and a decrease in vacation.

“It would also be wildly inaccurate to think we did not offer a slew of alternatives to each adverse item in their proposal,” wrote “Zack,” vice president of the guild’s editorial unit to Newsday employees, in a memo obtained by Romenesko. “We did, and we did so aggressively. They said they are in a crisis.”

Well, that’s true, at least. We see no option for Newsday employees but to vote for the plan. As the memo says:

In the event the majority of us vote it down, we will go back to the table and try to reach a new agreement.

As you may know, that approach does have some risks…They could have a stiffer posture the second time around, and companies often do. This information is provided not to discourage members from rejecting the contract proposal, but to allow us to see clearly what we will be up against if we decide to reject it.

So only time will tell, but the guild’s membership votes Jan. 10.