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Jobs summit vows to back co-ordinated campaign

NUJ Job Summit 2009

NUJ Job Summit 2009  -  © Andrew Wiard

26 January 2009

Around 150 NUJ members from all sectors of the media met in London on Saturday and vowed to support a co-ordinated campaign against job cuts and pay freezes.

The union's Jobs Summit unanimously agreed a motion calling for co-ordinated industrial action, a lobbying of the UK parliament and councils, a series of protests at industry events and a series of regional rallies.

Editorial workers from newspapers, magazines, broadcasting, books, PR, and websites – staff and freelance – joined with journalism students at the event.

There were activists from Britain, Ireland, and the NUJ's branches in Brussels and Paris. They endorsed a strategy that had been agreed earlier in the day at a meeting of the union's National Executive Council.

Workshop sessions had legal briefings, discussed community campaigns to Stand Up for Journalism such as the one in Oxford supported by the city's Mayor and heard from union members who had taken part in recent NUJ industrial action in places like York and Darlington.

A discussion on freelance cuts concluded that chapels – workplace union branches – should always seek to include casuals and contributors in activity and agreements.

Jeremy Dear, NUJ General Secretary, said, after the Summit:

"This was a great event with a brilliant mix of men and women of different ages and backgrounds.
"People learned from each other's examples and ideas. We will continue to support our geographical branches and workplace chapels to organise events, protests, and industrial action that protects journalists and defends journalism. The companies who employ NUJ members have sucked huge profits out of their workers and customers.
"They still make profits and have the cash to give executives big pay-offs and pensions. If NUJ members stick together, fight hard, and create a national debate on the importance of journalism in a democracy we can change things."

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