Elizabeth Warren and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Refuse to Cross New Yorker Union’s Picket Line
For Immediate Release | September 30, 2020
Press Inquiries: Josh Austin, 484.269.0158
Elizabeth Warren and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Refuse to Cross
New Yorker Union’s Picket Line
As New Yorker management refuses to agree to basic job security for its staff, the publication’s union plans informational picket of The New Yorker Festival
New York — Senator Elizabeth Warren and U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are standing in solidarity with The New Yorker Union. Represented by The NewsGuild of New York, New Yorker Union members will hold an informational picket on Monday, October 5, at 8 p.m. ET, to spotlight unfair labor practices at The New Yorker and to demand a just-cause provision in their first collective bargaining agreement. The picket coincides with a New Yorker Festival event scheduled to feature Representative Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Warren. Both have agreed not to cross the picket line, and to withdraw their participation in The New Yorker Festival, until New Yorker management agrees to the “just cause” standard of discipline that union members have proposed.
The New Yorker is currently in the midst of a labor dispute as company management — led by editor David Remnick and Condé Nast CEO Roger Lynch — refuses to agree to just cause, a basic labor standard found in other Guild contracts that guarantees due process, promotes fairness and accountability, and creates consistent, transparent standards in the workplace. This is an especially crucial protection for workers at Condé Nast, which has recently faced a public reckoning over hostile work environments at multiple magazines and a failure to fairly compensate employees of color. Unfortunately, management continues to cling to a system of at-will employment that enshrines a culture of secrecy and control.
“Many of our members work on The New Yorker Festival each year,” said Natalie Meade, Unit Chair of The New Yorker Union. “We also work overtime—often without pay—to publish a magazine, a website, and more. But our managers refuse to grant us just cause, which would be a signal of mutual respect and dedication. Just cause is a crucial labor protection that has been in NewsGuild contracts for decades, and our members understand the importance of this provision. We are a strong and united union, and we will fight for just cause by any means necessary.”
“Just cause is recognized as an essential labor standard that is particularly critical for media workers and journalists,” said Susan DeCarava, President of the NewsGuild of New York. “We thank Senator Warren and Representative Ocasio-Cortez for standing with us and honoring our picket while we fight for just cause, no exceptions. David Remnick and The New Yorker cannot profess to be interested in the future of progressivism while taking a deeply anti-worker position at the bargaining table. We will do whatever it takes to secure a strong, fair contract with just cause. Job security isn’t negotiable in media and journalism. It’s necessary.”
The Guild, along with our members of The New Yorker Union, invites the public to support our digital informational picket line on Monday, Oct. 5, at 8 p.m. Additional information can be found at newyorkerunion.com.
ABOUT THE NEWSGUILD OF NEW YORK
The NewsGuild of New York, Local 31003 of the Communications Workers of America, is a labor union representing nearly 4,000 media professionals and other employees at New York area news organizations, including The New York Times, The New Yorker, Thomson Reuters, The Nation, BuzzFeed News, TIME, People, Wirecutter, and The Daily Beast. The NewsGuild of New York advocates for press freedom, inclusive and diverse workplaces, and just cause for all media professionals.
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