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15 September, 2016

Media cuts

Newsquest has put its entire south London newsroom on notice of redundancy, bar the managing editor and the web editor. The remaining staff of 12 reporters and four content editors will be expected to continue to produce 11 newspapers and eight associated websites including the Croydon, Epsom, Sutton, Wandsworth and Wimbledon Guardians, the Richmond & Twickenham Times, the Surrey Comet and the Bexley, Bromley, Dartford, Greenwich and Lewisham editions of News Shopper.

Before the announcement, Newsquest’s staff were already balloting for industrial action and have now voted to take strike action and action short of a strike over inadequate staffing levels, excessive workloads, reduced quality of newspapers, the health and safety of employees, plus pay. The latest cuts came exactly a week after it was announced that none of the south London titles would continue to have professional photographers by mid-September.
What you can do to help:

  • Send a message of support to the chapel, email:
  • If you live in the areas affected then write to your MP and local councillors asking them to contact Newsquest to ask them to reverse this disastrous decision. Politicians should contact the chief executive Henry Faure Walker
  • For regular updates on the dispute visit the Local News Matters campaign pages on the NUJ website.  

Ask your MP to support and sign the Early Day Motion (EDM) in parliament about BBC Monitoring cuts. The EDM highlights the plans which could result in the loss of one in three of the workforce and calls on BBC management to consult with NUJ reps to minimise any redundancies and limit the damage caused. Read the EDM on parliament's website.


The IFJ have asked the NUJ to find members who are willing to record 15 second videos explaining "what has the union ever done for me" - so we are asking if you would film a video of yourself to say why you are a member of the NUJ. With your permission we would use the video as part of the IFJ campaign and we might also publish your video on the NUJ website. Help us to get this global message across! Send a short video via email: 

Preparations are underway for a series of commemorations for the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street in London’s East End, when local residents fought the black-shirted fascists led by Oswald Mosley. The NUJ has been asked to provide stewards for the national march and rally on Sunday 9 October 2016. On the day anti-fascists from across the UK will come together and march from Altab Ali Park to Cable Street, East London, where a rally will be held at St George's Gardens. There will be speakers both at the beginning and end of the event. There will be a stewards meeting on Sunday 25 September to do a walk through and briefing to prepare for the day. If you want to be an NUJ steward please email: and visit the Cable Street 80 website for more information.


Women of Colour, the Media and (Mis)Representation is an NUJ Scotland event for Black history month. The meeting will examine and discuss the gender disparities, challenges and opportunities for making women of colour more visible and powerful in media. The panellists will discuss the representation of women and women of colour in newspapers, online-only news sites, television, radio, social media, video games, film and television, sports news, newsmakers and media leadership. The event takes place on Thursday 6 October starting at 18.00 in Glasgow. The event is free but advanced booking is required, more information is on the events page online.

The Open Rights Group have organised an event in Birmingham on Wednesday 28 September at 18.30 to discuss how the Investigatory Powers Bill threatens press freedoms. This is a free, public event but registration is required. Visit the events page online for more details.

On Saturday 8 October there is a conference dedicated to confronting the rise in racism starting at 10.30 at Friends Meeting House in London. To view the list of speakers and to book your place visit the event page online.

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Supporting refugee and exiled journalists: The London College of Communication and the Migrants Resource Centre are collaboratively running an initiative called The Refugee Journalism Project. Through mentoring, journalism workshops and internships, the project seeks to support refugee and exiled journalists build up their network of industry contacts; update their skills; and get their voices into the mainstream. The participants have been recruited from Syria, Sudan, Eritrea, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Cuba, Pakistan, Bangladesh and the Yemen. All have successfully been through the asylum process and have confirmed refugee status. The project is currently looking for employers who are willing to offer the mentees supported internships or work experience. For more information about the project visit the Migrant Journalism website and to offer assistance please email Vivienne Francis:

Following years of abuse at the hands of the US government, imprisoned transparency advocate Chelsea Manning has released a statement announcing that she will be going on hunger strike to protest years of bullying and harassment by the military, and demand basic respect, humane treatment, and access to healthcare. Chelsea needs our support now more than ever. If you care about free speech, human rights, and government transparency, sign the petition to support Chelsea.

Pay back

DACS has published its latest annual review showing a record distribution of £16.7 million in royalties to over 26,000 photographers, visual artists and estates in 2015. If your work has been published in a UK book, magazine or TV programme then don't forget to make your claim before the online deadline of Friday 30 September. Visit the DACS website for more information.  


Former NUJ president Lionel Morrison and the current chair of the union's Black members council, Marc Wadsworth, feature in a new short video calling for donations and support to help make a film called London Recruits. In the late 1960s a group of white activists known as the London Recruits, including NUJ members, left for South Africa to join the struggle against apartheid. Today in a world still infused with racism and discrimination, the film London Recruits intends to tell the stories of those who risked their lives and liberty for the anti-apartheid movement. Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, said: "The story of the London Recruits needs to be told and I'd encourage our members and other trade unionists to donate what they can to support the film."
Watch the NUJ short film and make a donation on the kickstarter website.

Bill Binney was the best codebreaker in US history. After the Cold War, he developed a revolutionary surveillance tool called ThinThread that was cheap and efficient, and didn’t invade anyone’s privacy. He developed it right up until the NSA scrapped it - three weeks before 9/11. In its place NSA chose a surveillance system that generated profit and spied on its own citizens instead of its enemies. This system remains in place today. The film A Good American tells one of the most important stories of the information society, and dissects the inner workings and ties of a politico-economic network whose reach goes way beyond America. Join director Friedrich Moser, film protagonist Bill Binney and Silkie Carlo from Liberty in conversation after the showing of the documentary in London on Saturday 17 September starting at 18.15. Book your ticket online.

There is just one week left before the fourth London Labour Film Festival on 22-24 September. Browse the programme of events online. 

There are three weeks left until the North West Labour Film Festival on 6-9 October in Liverpool. Browse the programme of events online.

Dublin Workers Film Festival takes place on Saturday 1 October. Browse the programme of events online.


Filming and Editing for i-Devices: This is a one-day, hands-on course in Scotland for people  with an interest in learning how to use their iPhones or iPads to shoot, edit and upload short films. Participants will shoot and capture their own material exploring themes about Black history and edit the footage into a finished film, learning how to use voice-over, still images, graphics, text and other content to enhance the appearance of the project. People from BME backgrounds are under-represented in the media and this short course will introduce NUJ members to some of the skills needed. The course is particularly aimed at young people from BME backgrounds and takes place on Saturday 22 October starting 10.00 at the NUJ office in Glasgow. This is a free course but has limited places. For more information and to book your place visit the events page on the NUJ website.

Video for journalism: shooting and editing footage. This NUJ training course takes place in London on Thursday 2 February or on Monday 15 May starting at 10.00 on both days. For the course outline and to book your place visit the events pages on the NUJ website.

"Fantastic!" "Superb!" "Another super NUJ course as always. Way beyond expectations." "I think it is one of the best practical advice courses I have been on." "Worth union subs alone." This is what members are saying about the NUJ Google News Labs training. Don’t miss your opportunity to sign up for this free training in Belfast Friday 30 September, Cardiff 25 October and Edinburgh 8 November. Places are strictly limited visit the NUJ website for more information and to book your place.


Last September, the image of little Alan Kurdi’s body on a Turkish beach horrified the world. 100,000 marched in London in response to tell the UK government that we want to welcome refugees. Public pressure makes a difference - that same week, the government agreed to resettle 20,000 Syrian refugees. But since then, thousands more terrified and desperate people have lost their lives trying to reach safety. On Saturday 17 September there is another national demonstration to show Theresa May that the people of the UK want to help. The march starts on Park Lane in London at 12.45 on the southbound carriageway and will move towards Parliament Square, with music and speeches taking place at about 15.00. For more information visit Amnesty International's website.

Join other protestors on the national demonstration for libraries, museums and galleries. The march will start 12.00 outside the British Library in London on Saturday 5 November and will end outside the House of Commons with a rally including speakers. Since 2010 there have been 8,000 paid and trained library worker job cuts, and at least 343 libraries and one in five regional museums have been partially closed. There have also been cuts to opening hours, specialist services have been reduced, and there has been an increase in privatisation. Join users, staff, campaigners and trade unions and take part in the campaign before it's too late. Visit the Voices for the Library website for more details about the demonstration.

Austerity has failed! Join the TUC demonstration at the Conservative Party Conference on Sunday 2 October starting at 11.30 and assembling in Victoria Square in Birmingham. Coaches are being organised from around the UK and for more information visit the TUC website

This year, the National Pensioners Convention will be marking the UN Older People’s Day on Saturday 1 October with a series of protests around the country aimed at highlighting the need for a new National Health and Social Care Service. The NPC have also organised a lobby of parliament on Wednesday 2 November from 12.00. For more information visit the NPC website.

The National Union of Students (NUS) and the University and College Union (UCU) have announced a joint national demonstration calling for free, accessible and quality further and higher education taking place on Saturday 19 November. With coordinated education demonstrations due to take place in numerous countries around the world, the demonstration will also represent a call for international solidarity and opposition to all forms of racism and xenophobia. For more information visit the NUS website

Any NUJ members who would like to take part in the 2017 Durham Miners’ Gala and join Newcastle, Sunderland, Shields and Hartlepool members to walk behind our union's banner should contact Ken Smith on or SS&H branch secretary John Bainbridge on

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