Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Baltimore Sun shows 3 the door

Twenty-four Guild members took the buyout, but 3 advertising designers were laid off yesterday. The following is the Guild's announcement to it's members. Posted with permission.

The other shoe dropped yesterday on three people in the Guild bargaining unit who learned that they would be laid off from their jobs. In keeping with what has become Tribune tradition, they were told to leave the building immediately, though they will still be paid for four weeks and receive severance specified under the Guild contract. All work as advertising designers.

The layoffs come after 41 people – 24 of them in the Guild unit – took the buyout and left the company last week. Hundreds of years of experience walked out of the newsroom on Friday.

We all recognize that this is a challenging time in the newspaper industry, but Guild members know that reducing resources is not the way to meet these challenges. And that’s exactly what layoffs and buyouts are.

Perhaps moves like these could be defended if The Sun were in financial trouble, but it remains a highly profitable business. The only people disappointed with its profits work for the Tribune Corp. who must think we are not sending enough money from Baltimore to Chicago.

The Guild has arranged support services for our three members through the AFL-CIO. It is just a shame that we cannot arrange such support for Tribune, whose managers need to know that The Sun will not thrive if it is put on a starvation diet. If you want to see this newspaper succeed, you need to invest in the people who put it out every day. Don’t lay them off.

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