EFJ joins ETUC action day for youth employment and against austerity
The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) will join with trade unionists and civil society groups across Europe gathering at the European Trade Union action against austerity and for jobs for young people, organised by the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC).
"Thousands of journalists have lost their jobs in the past months, and many more are forced to work in precarious conditions" said EFJ President Arne König. "But what alarms us most is the total growing precarity among journalists, especially the young and women, who are deprived of any job security. Such a disregard for journalists is threatening the necessary professional standards for the production of reliable and independent journalism as a public good. In both public and private media, journalists are being asked to do more work with less resources, and this is a direct consequence of austerity policies".
Ahead of its General Meeting in May 2013, the EFJ is collecting data about redundancies and job losses of journalists, and the preliminary conclusions do not leave any doubt about the scale of the crisis. Spain is the main country hit, with nearly 4000 job losses in 2012, but even in well-off countries like the Netherlands, Germany and Norway, downsizing of media companies and mergers of newsrooms have a devastating impact on working conditions and on employment.
In a recent resolution, the Council of Europe pointed out that "many journalists in Europe work in precarious situations resulting from an increase of freelance positions, lack of respect for social rights and generally low income. Where the journalistic profession is weakened by such circumstances, professional quality and ethics are at stake".
"There is a clear relation between precarious working conditions of journalists and professional standards", said König. "We call on the EU and member states to fully implement European social standards, in particular collective rights of journalists even if they are forced to work as fake freelancers. At stake here are not only the working conditions for our colleagues, but a system of providing quality information to the citizens of Europe, reliable information needed in our daily life and needed to decide on the future of Europe."
In Brussels, the rally will take place on 14 March 2013 at the Parc du Cinquantenaire from 14.00 - 16.00.
As part of a Europe-wide week of action, the trade union movement in Europe will host events and activities against austerity.
As part of the campaign, the UK TUC is holding a rally in central London, calling on the Chancellor to make sure his spring budget does not cause further hardships for Britain's families and working people.
London: Wednesday 13 March 2013 starting at 18:00
The Emmanuel Centre, 9-23 Marsham Street, London SW1P 3DW
Reserve your place via the TUC website
If you can't make it to London you can pledge to watch the event online.
It will be streamed live and there will be a series of online actions that you can do.
Resisting Austerity in Europe and the UK
Conference for trade unionists organised by the SERTUC Public Services and International Committees on Saturday 16 March, 10.00 – 16.00
Congress House, Great Russell St, London WC1 3LS