Friday, March 20, 2009
Morning Star workers win posted by Richard SeymourAfter having covered the strike by NUJ members at the Morning Star, it's only right to congratulate them on their victory. This is the NUJ's press release:
Morning Star journalists prove the power of a union
Workers' fight ends in decisive win
Journalists at Britain's 'daily paper of the left' have won a decisive victory over bosses who claimed they were 'betraying their class' by fighting for fair pay.
The sub-editors and reporters at the historic newspaper, which has a solid reputation backing workers fighting back, won their claim for a £19,000 a year minimum wage.
Bosses at the paper had offered the workers just a 3 per cent rise for the 2008 pay deal — effectively a pay cut as last year's average inflation rate was 4 per cent — claiming that there was no cash to pay more.
But this year, the Morning Star is benefiting from the largest investment of cash in it's history, some £600,000.
The journalists claim for £19,000 translated into a 5.7 per cent pay rise for the lowest-paid staff, but management insisted on ignoring their commitment to follow through on a previous pledge to try to raise wages when money was available.
Faced with management's refusal to put even a fraction of the hundreds of thousands of pounds in new investment towards improving low pay, the journalists voted 80 per cent to strike.
This move forced their bosses to concede the workers' full 5.7 per cent claim - plus a 3 per cent lump sum bonus - and exposed management's claim that the paper could not afford to improve pay.