A proposal by the Mercury News to suspend vacation accural for four months to save the paper $195,000 has not been well received by Guild negotiators, according to the union’s website. “This issue remains undecided, but we have made members’ dissatisfaction with the proposal loud and clear,” the Guild leadership said on the website.

The Guild said its latest proposal to the Merc includes:

    • A 2% wage increase beginning June 30, 2011. 
    • Restoration of the company’s 401(k) match. 
    • An 18-month contract expiring June 4, 2012. 
    • Opposition to the company’s proposal for a five-day unpaid furlough.

Union negotiators also said they reached a tentative agreement that would allow some cross-over work between photographers and reporters, but would provide guarantees that such work is voluntary and employees only would be judged on their primary skill.

Bay Area Media News

4 Comments

  1. Unions are killing newspapers and media outlets in general. New media has a significant advantage because it doesn't have a unionized work force.

  2. Do they not see the number of journalists at their sister newspapers, many of whom serve the same readership, yet remain unrepresented with (presumably) lower wages?

    It seems rather self-centric to expect the rock star treatment when there are so many other reporters out there willing to bring a point-and-shoot to a ribbon cutting — and don't tell me they're doing this to protect the photographers' jobs — they just don't want any extra work for the same pay.

    I bet these people order lobster at the Christmas party while everyone else gets catfish.

  3. Wow! What a big step for the union … allowing reporters to take pictures. What century are they living in. Do they still compose the Merc on hot type! The rest of us not only take pictures, we shoot video and can report on several platforms. I'm sure the Merc's management would like its unionized employees to be more versatile, but it looks like the union is holding people back. No wonder newspapers are going out of business.

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