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Scottish parliamentary committee says local reporters are underpaid

6 July 2010

A six-month investigation into the state of the local newspaper industry in Scotland has concluded that local journalists are overworked and should be better paid. The investigation's findings are contained in a report by the Scottish Parliament's Education, Lifelong Learning and Culture Committee.

The NUJ has welcomed the findings of the report, which argues that, given the growing pressures on journalists, it was essential that the management of newspaper companies "take steps to make sustained investment in journalism."

The report adds that:

"such investment must ensure that journalists are supported, developed and fairly remunerated in order to play their vital role in the production of vibrant titles that will continue to find a market and – perhaps more importantly – carry out their important cultural, scrutiny and other functions in local communities across Scotland."

Jeremy Dear, NUJ General Secretary, said:

"This report concurs with our findings and the experience of our members working on local and regional titles not just in Scotland, but across the country. The recipe is all too often the same, ever increasing pressure on journalists – as a result of resources being cut and wages frozen, to shore up the profits of the big regional newspaper groups.
"The report's findings will strike a chord with those journalists across groups like Trinity Mirror and Johnston Press, now facing redundancy, in the face of continued multi-million pound profits for the group and multi-million pound remuneration for the board."
"We will continue to fight for jobs, better pay and better conditions, across the UK."

Tags: , pay and conditions, newspapers, parliament scotland, local newspapers