Union wins recognition campaign at Vice UK

THE NUJ has won a recognition deal at the digital news group Vice UK in a move that activists hope will lead to further such agreements in online news. The deal, struck in the summer after lengthy

talks at the conciliation service Acas, comes after three years of attempts by Vice UK journalists to win union recognition. Three years ago, Vice UK set up a staff council in an effort to avert journalists’ attempts to unionise. The NUJ has since held

further talks at Acas in September to work out the details of the deal that covers 40 posts at the youth-focused online news organisation. The Vice UK NUJ chapel said: “After four months of negotiations, the Vice

UK NUJ chapel is proud to have achieved voluntary recognition. This result would not have been possible without the sustained and energetic campaigning of our chapel. “As one of the first new media organisations in the UK to achieve union recognition, we hope this outcome inspires our colleagues across the industry to unionise too – and for

their managers to listen to their demands. “We would like to thank Michelle

Stanistreet, Laura Davison, and Andy Smith from the National Union of Journalists for their help every step of the way, and finally to state our continued commitment to fighting for fairness and equality for all Vice UK staff.” Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, said: “We’re delighted to

welcome this agreement. The energy and enthusiasm our reps and members at the Vice UK chapel have brought to their

organising drive has been hugely impressive. Their commitment to delivering a collective voice at work is inspiring and they should be congratulated.” The NUJ is pursuing other opportunities to

unionise in digital news. A number of online US news outlets including Vox and HuffPost have unionised. BuzzFeed US recognise its union following lengthy negotiations. However, employees at BuzzFeed UK last year voted not to have union representation.

Threats to investigative journalist

POLICE ARE investigating online threats against a journalist who exposed historic child sex abuse. Rodney Edwards of Enniskillen’s The Impartial Reporter has been advised to check his car. Police patrols around his home and workplace have been increased. Victims, survivors and supporters have held rallies in Enniskillen to call for action. Despite over 50 alleged abusers

being reported, there have so far been no charges. The trades union council and most political parties supported the rallies. Labour Alternative and

Independent councillors have tried to raise the issue on Fermanagh and Omagh District Council. The acting chief executive threatened legal action against Labour Alternative councillor and NUJ member Donal O’Cofaigh when he spoke on the issue. The Sinn Féin chair refused to take a motion from Independent councillor John McCluskey, commending Rodney for his work.

Voting for the next editor of The Journalist

NUJ MEMBERS will soon receive ballot papers to vote for the next editor of The Journalist. The editor’s post is one of only two positions in the union, along with the

general secretary’s role, which is elected by the membership. Nine journalists are standing for the part-time role and the successful candidate will serve a

five-year term. Information from the candidates is on pages 30 – 34. Ballot papers are being sent out to members on October 16 and the vote closes at noon on November 6. If you don’t receive a ballot

paper, please contact

We hope this outcome inspires our colleagues across the industry to unionise too

Vice UK NUJ chapel inbrief...

BBC DROPS SANCTION ON BREAKFAST HOST The BBC reversed a decision to sanction Breakfast host Naga Munchetty over remarks made after President Donald Trump said that some of his opponents ‘could go back to where they’d come from’. The change of heart came after the BBC faced heavy criticism from leading broadcasters, the NUJ and others over the original action taken by the complaints unit.

PLATINUM TARGETS THE OVER 55 MARKET Platinum, a new monthly magazine aimed at women over 55, launched last month. Publisher DC Thomson said it was the biggest UK women’s magazine launch in over a decade. Platinum covers health, style, travel, financial advice and homes.Maggie Philbin and The Sun’s Jane Moore are columnists.

CLOONEY DRAFTS FREE SPEECH LAWS Human rights lawyer Amal Clooney has helped draft ‘model laws’ on free speech protection. She said that some countries’ laws are “used every day to punish journalists for their work”. She is the UK’s special envoy on media freedom.

TIMES TITLES POOL SOME RESOURCES The Times and the Sunday Times are to share resources across their travel, money, property and sport sections. This follows a government move which allowed News UK to change editorial independence rules established when Rupert Murdoch bought both titles in 1981.

WEEKLY PAPERS MERGE WEBSITES Weekly papers the Tameside Reporter, Glossop Chronicle and Oldham Reporter have gone from being paid-for to free in a relaunch which also merges their websites. The moves come after former Tameside Reporter paper boy Chris Bird took over the papers’ publisher Quest Media earlier this year.

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