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Tindle newspapers dispute resolved 23 June 2011

Posted by Donnacha DeLong in disputes, NUJ.
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The dispute over staffing and quality in North London and Herts Newspapers has been resolved. The dispute in Enfield had centred on non-replacement of journalists at the Tindle newspaper group’s titles and led to a strike in April. The NUJ chapel had recently voted to take further strike action.

NUJ head of publishing Barry Fitzpatrick said: “I’m pleased that we have been able to hold genuinely positive discussions with management to resolve the differences between us. Both sides recognise that producing newspapers which serve local communities properly is a business requiring commitment from everybody involved.

“Happily, that commitment exists at North London and Herts Newspapers, helping us to resolve our dispute. We look forward to engaging in further discussions with management at an early date to consider ways to advance the interests of our members and the newspapers and communities they serve.”

According to the chapel’s strike blog, following a successful day of negotiations, Tindle has agreed to reverse its policy of non-replacement agreeing to a six month moratorium on present staffing levels – guaranteeing that if anyone in editorial leaves over this period they will be replaced. They have also agreed an extra reporter to work for half the week to help out with the current workload. The situation after six months will then be reviewed. Redundancy consultation notices issued to staff on the eve of their first walk out have been withdrawn.

FOC Jonathan Lovett said: “It has been a long, hard struggle but we are satisfied with the result and now look forward to working together with Tindle to ensure our papers are returned to the quality publications which our readers deserve. We have many ideas for the future of our papers and we look forward to sharing them with the Tindle management across the table.”

Jonathan Lovett will speak at the upcoming launch of the NUJ campaign to save local journalism.

This story has also been covered by:

Journalism.co.uk: Tindle Newspapers strikes deal with Enfield Nine, says NUJ
Hold the Front Page: Strike off as Tindle puts headcount reductions on hold
Press Gazette: Tindle resolves Enfield industrial dispute

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Stand up for local journalism 21 June 2011

Posted by Donnacha DeLong in events, NUJ.
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Invite to national campaign to save local newspapersLocal newspapers across the UK and Ireland are being destroyed by owners who put profit before everything else – quality, staffing and sales. Three of the major newspaper groups publish local titles in North London – North London & Herts Newspapers, owned by Sir Ray Tindle; Newsquest and Archant.

Journalists at North London & Herts Newspapers are currently in dispute with their owner over the continuing refusal to replace staff who leave. They took strike action last month and have balloted to take more action.

Journalists working for Newsquest South London took two days strike action last week against a further round of redundancies that’s leaving them incapable of doing their job properly and are planning more strike action next week. Newsquest have been cutting staffing to the bone in all of their papers and those in the North London group are no different.

The same goes for Archant, where a dispute with the NUJ in Norfolk was only recently resolved as the company continues to make cuts elsewhere.

With all the focus on public services provided by the government and councils, it’s easy to forget that some services have always been provided largely by the private sector. Local newspapers are one such and, at their best, they help to keep the community informed about what’s going on their local area – performing an essential role in overseeing local democracy. Wave after wave of cuts has seriously impacted on the ability of journalists working for local titles to do their jobs and has left many in the situation where they can do little more than sit at their desk churning press releases and searching google for stories.

Join the NUJ in standing up for real local journalism – journalism that’s connected to the community, that plays a critical role in local politics holding those involved to account and journalism that helps to highlight the problems in the community to the broader public to help change the local society.

Join us from 6.30pm on Monday, July 4 at The Dugdale Centre, Thomas Hardy House, London Road, Enfield Town, EN2 6DS for the launch of a national campaign to save local newspapers.

Reporting the BNP in London 13 March 2010

Posted by Donnacha DeLong in General, NUJ.
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London Central branch agreed in January to become one of the sponsors of the Expose launch rally on 23 February. We also agreed to dedicate April’s branch meeting to discussing how best to report on the BNP in London.

This spring, many of our members will have to cover the build up to both a set of council elections in London and the General Election itself. This will certainly present many problems as journalists seek to present a true picture without aiding in the spreading of racist lies.

The union has drawn up guidelines, but we know many NUJ members will have plenty of questions and concerns. Speakers from the union will be on hand to give advice and deal with questions.

We are asking all our chapels to discuss this issue in advance and try to ensure that they are represented at the meeting.

Make sure you tell us you’re coming via the Meetup group.

London Central Branch wants to improve communications 12 March 2010

Posted by Donnacha DeLong in General, NUJ.
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London Central Branch is working to improve communications with branch members. We’ve set up a group on Meetup.com, a social networking website with a specific focus on physical meetings. The site will let you know when meetings are on, what we’re planning to discuss and who’s going to be there.

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Branch Christmas Party 2009 2 December 2009

Posted by Donnacha DeLong in events, NUJ.
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Christmas is getting closer so why not kick off the festive party season by joining us for our annual branch Christmas bash next Tuesday, 8 December at 7pm at the Punch & Judy Tavern in Fleet Street, just off the junction with Farringdon Road and Ludgate Circus.

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