All five Chicago Newspaper Guild (CNG) bargaining units voted to ratify the Contract Extension Agreement reached with Sun-Times Media management. The three-year contract was reached after 15 months of negotiations. Four of the 17 photographers protected by Chicago Newspaper Guild will also get their jobs back as art of a settlement reached that was part of the package deal with the company.
“I think it’s great. Not everyone was happy, but I think all five units understood the dynamics of what this contract agreement means. It means presence in the newsroom by union-proud employees, including some photographers. I think bringing some photographers back is a big win,” said CNG President David Pollard.
Both the Chicago Sun-Times and Gary Post-Tribune bargaining units voted to ratify the tentative agreement (TA) at ratification meetings Monday, Dec. 2. Chicago Newspaper Guild President David Pollard called Monday’s votes “a step in the right direction.”
“Hopefully, we’ll get the same type of response from the rest of our members,” Pollard said. “I want to thank everybody—mobilizers and the negotiating committee for all their hard work.”
The agreement was reached after 15 months of bargaining with the company.
The TA is not a done deal until the remaining three units vote at their meetings, scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 3.
More layoffs are imminent at Sun-Times Media, media blogger Robert Feder reported in a recent story.
“Any further layoffs in the editorial department on the part of Sun-Times Media will be at its own peril. The Guild promptly challenged the layoffs of our Sun-Times Unit Chair and the entire photography department with the National Labor Relations Board. The Guild will exhaust all legal options to prevent any future layoffs. Moreover, from a practical standpoint, I really cannot see how the Sun-Times can put out a viable product with any further layoffs in its editorial department,” Chicago Newspaper Guild Executive Director Craig Rosenbaum said.
It was meant to celebrate the scariest night of the year, but guests at the grand gala Saturday night at the Chicago Cultural Center had little to fear. Party planners went out of their way to protect them from the night’s major menace: Guild members past and present, armed only with the truth.
Rapper Lupe Fiasco apparently has a better eye for photography than the 29 Sun-Times Media photojournalists who were laid off earlier this year. On Tuesday night, the same owners who abolished their photography department purchased a series of costly photos from Fiasco, who is an aspiring photographer outside of his prominent music career.
Fiasco’s 15 photos are on display in Hotel Public Chicago until Friday, Oct. 4. They will then get transferred to the lobby of Wrapports LLC — the parent company of Sun-Times Media. Wrapports does not hide its pride in Fiasco’s artistic accomplishments, as high-ranking officials asked for a Sun-Times article on the unveiling of his photos and their purchase of that work. However, Chicago Newspaper Guild points out that a freelance writer covered the story instead of a staff writer. Here’s a link to the article: http://www.suntimes.com/entertainment/22913268-421/rap-musician-helps-launch-artist-in-residence-program.html
Almost exactly four months after getting fired, several of the fired Sun-Times Media photographers (STM29) returned to the same building where they fired to receive accolades as Chicago Journalists of the Year by Chicago Journalists Association (CJA).
“This room is uncomfortably close to where it happened in May,” STM29 photographer Jon Sall said.
Collectively, the STM29 had more than 613 years’ photojournalist experience when they were abruptly fired.
“These men and women are being honored for their exemplary documenting of Chicago area events,” said CJA President Allen Rafalson.
The Midwest Association of Translators and Interpreters is holding its 10th annual conference in Chicago this Saturday, Sept. 21.
Topics include medical and legal interpretation, the role of translators in immigration and an expert panel discussing translator marketing. Cook County Court Interpreters’ current contract allows unit members to get reimbursed for professional conference registration expenses.
Reimbursement is available to the first 10 full-time interpreters who apply for it per year. Reimbursement forms are on the 33rd floor of Daley Center, Human Resources Department. Reimbursement application deadlines and requirement to provide advance proof of conference registration and payment must be strictly adhered to.