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End unsafe precarious work, says NUJ

NEC members Christina Zaba, Arjum Wajid and Pennie Quinton   -  © NUJ

28 April 2017

The NUJ today warned of the link between precarious working conditions and an unhealthy work environment. The union’s national executive council marked Workers Memorial Day with a moment of reflection at the beginning of its April meeting in Headland House, London.

Séamus Dooley, acting general secretary, said:

"In remembering workers who have died or have been seriously injured in occupation accidents, we are reminded of the need to improve health and safety at work. Precarious working conditions take a heavy emotional and physical toll on workers; uncertainty about income, about working hours and contracts all diminish wellbeing. Precarious workers are frequently expected to operate under unbearable conditions, to take risks and short cuts in order to get tasks finished quicker.

"Within the 24 hours news cycle media workers are forever racing against the clock. Journalists are increasing viewed as content providers, with inadequate time for the exercise of editorial judgement. The pressure on freelance workers, in particular, is enormous."

Tim Dawson, NUJ president, said:

"Today we remember the contribution of journalists who have died in the line of duty. Our thoughts are with their families, friends and colleagues. We are also reminded of the constant struggle to defend press freedom and to vindicate the rights of media workers to do their work without hindrance."

Tags: , health and safety, workers' memorial day, precarious, freelance, tuc