As CBS News primarily focuses on the Super Bowl in Las Vegas and the events surrounding it, its digital staffers back in New York have formed a union.
CBS News Digital writers and editors have formed a union with the Writers Guild of America East for the purpose of collective bargaining.
This union comprises CBS News Digital staffers who work on CBSNews.com, the mobile website, social media channels and the CBS News app.
Writers, editors and producers at @CBSNews Digital have unionized with @WGAEast. An overwhelming majority of our unit signed cards and we’re asking management to voluntarily recognize our union, without delay or division. https://t.co/JL1FWawP1r pic.twitter.com/psO4sxrEJE
— CBS News Digital Union (@cbsdigitalunion) February 8, 2024
The statement also included a quote from Kathy McGee, WGAE vp of broadcast/cable/streaming news and a writer/producer at CBS News New York, who said, “The WGAE already represents workers at CBS News and CBS News Streaming, and it is incumbent on CBS’s management to recognize CBS News Digital’s demand for voluntary recognition of their union. We are seeing unprecedented mergers, consolidation and layoffs in the news industry. Journalists are telling stories and lifting voices in communities that are often ignored. The most responsible thing media workers can do is to form a union to win critical workplace protection.”
In a letter sent to CBS News management, digital staffers offered their reasoning for forming a union, saying that they had “the support of an overwhelming majority of our colleagues at CBS News Digital” and love and are committed to working for the network.
They pointed out and detailed the five key issues they want to be addressed: transparency, equitable and fair compensation and benefits, diversity and editorial standards.
The letter concluded with the staffers saying, “By joining together as a union and collectively creating a contract, we want to make sure our voices are heard as we navigate through this exciting but constantly changing industry.
As a union, we want to ensure that all of CBS News Digital’s staff are protected and treated fairly as we continue on this journey together.”
In response, a spokesperson for CBS News provided the following statement, “We have great respect for our Digital News team and highly value their contributions to our organization. We are currently reviewing the matter and we look forward to working through this process.”
Meanwhile, the WGA-East’s broadcast/cable/streaming news sector also touted its success in union negotiations, having successfully won its first collective bargaining agreement at MSNBC and a second contract at CBS News Streaming.