Salmond meets NUJ over Trinity Mirror strike
24 April 2009
Alex Salmond, Scotland's First Minster, met representatives of the NUJ this afternoon to discuss ongoing strike action over job cuts at the Daily Record and Sunday Mail. The meeting followed a vote in the Scottish Parliament yesterday calling on the papers' owners to talk to the NUJ rather than impose compulsory redundancies.
The meeting with the First Minster was attended by Norman Silvester, father of the Sunday Mail chapel, Paul Holleran, NUJ Scottish Organiser, and Jeremy Dear, NUJ General Secretary.
The NUJ Record and Mail chapel have already staged a total of four days of strike action over the compulsory redundancy of 24 colleagues and further cutbacks to the profitable titles.
Speaking from the picket line in Glasgow, Gregor Simpson, deputy father of the Daily Record NUJ chapel said:
"This is our fifth day of strike action but the chapel is not waivering – in fact they are getting stronger."
In Westminster, UK MPs have put down a cross-party motion supporting the strike. MPs from the cross-party NUJ Parliamentary Group in London sent messages of support to the journalists in Glasgow who started a further three-day action today.
Katy Clark, Labour MP for North Ayrshire and Arran and member of the NUJ Parliamentary Group, said:
"I fully support the Daily Record and Sunday Mail workers currently taking industrial action.
"I believe it is appalling that an organisation which continues to make such profits should be making compulsory redundancies in this way and hope that those taking action are able to reverse these changes and force Trinity Mirror into meaningful negotiations about the best way forward for the papers."
John McDonnell, Labour MP for Hayes and Harlington and Secretary of the NUJ Parliamentary Group, said:
"The Sunday Mail and Daily Record are historic Scottish titles and provide an important service to the Scottish community.
"I stand in solidarity with the NUJ members defending the principles of high quality journalism through their action over the next few days."
MPs of three parties have signed the Early Day Motion tabled in Westminster in support of the strikers today. The motion reads:
Strike Action at the Daily Record and Sunday Mail
This house supports the three-day strike organised NUJ members at the Glasgow-based Daily Record and Sunday Mail starting from Friday 24th April 2009 in protest against owners Trinity Mirror's decision to enforce 24 compulsory redundancies as a part of a plan to merge the titles; recognises that The Sunday Mail and Daily Record are iconic Scottish titles and make significant profits for Trinity Mirror; believes that these planned redundancies will undermine the quality of journalism provided by these newspapers; and therefore urges Trinity Mirror to abandon these cuts and instead enter into meaningful negotiations with the union representing staff in order to solve the challenges the titles face.
It is being tabled by: Labour's Katy Clark, Jim Devine, Thomas Clarke, Mark Lazarowicz, John McDonnell, Austin Mitchell, David Drew, Ian Gibson and Kelvin Hopkins; Liberal Democrat Alistair Carmichael; and the SNP's Pete Wishart.