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Glasgow Trinity Mirror strike escalates as ACAS talks fail

20 April 2009

NUJ members at the Glasgow-based Daily Record and Sunday Mail are to hold a three-day strike next weekend as they step up their campaign against compulsory job cuts. They are also holding a fresh industrial action ballot to widen the scope of the disputes to cover the reorganisation of the papers and changes to working conditions.

Paul Holleran, NUJ Scottish Organiser, attended talks with Trinity Mirror managers and officials of the UK government conciliation service, ACAS, this morning. He said that the meeting had not resolved the dispute and added:

"The chapel are solid in support of their colleagues facing redundancy.
"We intend to show the company the error of their ways using every industrial, legal and political means at our disposal."

The Record and Mail chapel have already held two one-day strikes and one 48-hour strike.

They are protesting at the Trinity Mirror-owned titles' decision to force more than twenty of their colleagues out of work.

This weekend, journalists will strike on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Between walkouts, they are working to rule.

On Wednesday, the ballot papers required by UK law will go out to NUJ members working for the Record and Mail to enable them to authorise action over the planned reorganisation of the papers and the changes to working practices involved.

The journalists have won the backing of the spring conference of the Scottish National Party (SNP). On Saturday, the SNP conference voted to oppose the reorganisation, which will bring the titles more closely together, and to recognise the separate traditions of the Daily Record and the Sunday Mail.

Delegates also called for the company to negotiate with the NUJ rather than enforce compulsory redundancies.

Speaking at the conference, Kenneth Gibson, Cunninghame North MSP, said:

"Scotland has a proud journalistic heritage.
"The Sunday Mail and Daily Record are iconic Scottish titles, making significant profits for Trinity Mirror. Compulsory redundancies are not the way forward.
"Plans to merge the two titles are unacceptable."

The annual conference of the Scottish Trades Union Congress will vote today on an emergency motion to support the strikers. Paul Holleran will also speak at an STUC meeting today about health and safety.

He has express concern that big staff cuts in Scottish media will lead to stress and health and safety problems for those workers left behind.

Jeremy Dear, NUJ General Secretary, said:

"We fully support the Record and Mail chapel in stepping up the action to defend their jobs and their newspapers.
"I thank the SNP, other Scottish politicians, the Scottish TUC and trade unionists across Britain and Ireland for the magnificent support they have already given to this dispute."

Jeremy Dear is to visit Scotland at the weekend to meet strikers and Scottish politicians.

Tags: , newspapers, trinity mirror, redundancies, acas, strike, snp, daily record, sunday mail, stuc, cuts, merger, health and safety