Tuesday 16 November 2010

Pay strike called off at Newsquest Southampton

The NUJ has called off this week's planned strike at Newsquest Southampton, publisher of the Southern Daily Echo, and is seeking talks with management, HoldtheFrontPage reports.

HTFP says that in a letter sent to Hampshire managing director Stewart Dunn, the NUJ's head of publishing Barry Fitzpatrick said the union had called off the strike to facilitate a meeting between NUJ representatives and Newsquest management.

Last week NUJ members at Southampton staged a 48 hour strike in protest at Newsquest's continuing pay freeze. NUJ members at The Argus, Brighton, also owned by Newsquest, have voted to take strike action over pay and redundancies on Thursday and Friday this week.

HTFP quotes Southern Daily Echo NUJ rep David Brine saying "Last week's strike was a last resort after months of fruitless negotiations. Members felt there is no alternative but now we are offering management another chance to negotiate with us.

"We have offered major concessions such as accepting a zero per cent settlement and having the loyalty payments reinstated but management has refused to budge an inch and enter into meaningful talks."

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