Newsquest award winners left out in the cold
13 June 2008
Staff at York and County Press nominated for a media award were ignored – only management was invited to the Press Gazette Regional Press Awards ceremony in London.
As managers sipped champagne, NUJ representatives leafleted passers-by outside the awards venue to raise awareness of members taking industrial action in York.
York County Press was nominated in the 'Scoop of the year' category.
Jenny Lennox, NUJ assistant organiser, said:
"It is shameful that managers from Newsquest York are in London sipping champagne while their staff are struggling on low pay. To not even reward the journalists who earned them the nomination shows the contempt they have for their staff.
"The papers should recognise their award-winning staff and give them award-winning pay deals, not below-inflation pay rises and worse deals than other titles."
Journalists at Newsquest-owned titles in York have been continuing their action by holding mandatory chapel meetings. Despite threats from management that any journalist who was late for work would be sent home without pay, yesterday's inaugural meeting was well attended.
NUJ members met for six hours from 8am and returned to work en-masse after discussing ways to take their protests further. The managing editor sent home journalists from the morning shifts with no pay but those on the late shifts were allowed to stay and receive a full-day's pay.
Management has agreed to mediation with conciliation service Acas, so subsequent meetings have been put on hold.