The NUJ has condemned Trinity Mirror for proposing more job cuts in the Midlands after the company confirmed today that it was considering taking the Birmingham Post weekly and producing the Birmingham Mail overnight - moves the NUJ predicted would happen last June.
Today, the NUJ says Trinity Mirror staff in Birmingham and Coventry were told that a consultation period had begun and up to 85 jobs could be lost across the company.
Jeremy Dear, NUJ general secretary, said: “Trinity Mirror Midlands managers refused to confirm these proposals even when we put them in the public domain. In the last month they have closed down weekly papers – which we also predicted – even though there was at least one potential buyer for the titles. And they have launched scurrilous attacks on NUJ members trying to defend jobs and newspapers – calling them ‘highly irresponsible’.
“Trinity Mirror managers have been shown to be irresponsible with regard to the truth and their attitude to their newspapers and the communities they serve. The union will fight to defend the jobs of journalists and the future of the Post. If there are other publishers interested in the title Trinity Mirror should be prepared to sell.”
Dear also condemned the plan to turn the Mail into a morning paper. He said: “This is all about saving money by sacking van drivers and distribution staff without any thought for the good of the newspaper. Without the ability to cover breaking news the Mail will lose a key selling point.
“When Michael Jackson died overnight the paper sold thousands of extra copies thanks to locally produced content. That sort of reaction to a breaking story is under threat from these proposals.
“If carried through today’s proposals constitute a major attack on journalists and journalism in the UK’s second biggest city. The NUJ will support our members in Birmingham in whatever action they decide to take to stand up for journalism.”