Five compulsory job cuts avoided in Shropshire

Five compulsory redundancies have been saved in Shropshire after threatened industrial action.

In October, parent company Midland News Association announced 135 job cuts across its titles, including the Shropshire Star and Wolverhampton Express and Star, in an effort to save £3m.

In February, the National Union of Journalists – which is not recognised by MNA – said 12 editorial posts in Shropshire were being cut, including five weekly editors and five trainees. Union members responded by voting in favour of industrial action.

Since then, a number of staff have left – including weeklies group editor John Butterworth – but MNA still planned to cut five editorial jobs.

But this week, just 24 hours after staff gave notice of a mandatory chapel meeting on Wednesday 11 March, management announced they would make savings elsewhere.

NUJ northern regional organiser Chris Morley said: ‘This is a fantastic result especially as the chapel is not recognised.

‘It shows that campaigning by union members can make a difference whatever the circumstances. People were joining the union to support the fight against job cuts.

‘We were particularly concerned that trainees were being targeted for redundancies even though the company had a contractual obligation to train them.

‘These points were made very strongly.”

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