NUJ at STV to strike as board and shareholders meet for AGM

  • 30 Apr 2024

Journalists at STV are on strike action on Wednesday 1 May after the latest pay offer put forward by the company was rejected by staff.

The strike coincides with the broadcaster’s annual general meeting. NUJ representatives, STUC representatives and individual staff will all be attending as shareholders to ask questions of the board.

Nick McGowan-Lowe, NUJ national organiser for Scotland said

“While the company showed willingness to engage with us to find a resolution to this dispute, it is disappointing that once again our journalists are having to head out of the newsrooms and into the shareholder AGM to find out answers to resolve this dispute.

"The company tells us that a fair rise of 6 per cent to keep pace with inflation is unaffordable,  but it has no problem with paying shareholders a 7 per cent bonus, or a vastly inflated wage for chief executive Simon Pitts. As shareholders, we will be asking the board why.

“A tiny fraction of Simon Pitt’s bonus would be enough to resolve this dispute for all 90 of the newsroom’s staff – and still leave him paid vastly more than the director general of the BBC – an organisation that is over 45 times larger than STV.”

The first one-day strike in the dispute saw newsroom staff on picket lines in Aberdeen, Dundee and Glasgow, with a separate demonstration at the Scottish Parliament attracting cross-party support for better pay for the striking journalists.

At Holyrood for First Ministers’ Questions First Minister Humza Yousaf called on STV to return to talks with the union to reach a fair settlement for their journalists.

Management was forced to pull all on-air news programmes from the schedule with the flagship 6’o’clock news programme replaced by a repeat of a Scottish travel programme. Morning bulletins for Scottish viewers were replaced with the news from ITV Border, which is headquartered in Carlisle.

The second scheduled strike day, scheduled for Tuesday 16 April, was postponed after last- minute talks between the NUJ and management. Following further talks, a package of proposals was put to NUJ members, which was rejected.

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