Morley keeps job but is reprimanded

Morley: ‘received fantastic support’

Trinity Mirror has pulled back from taking disciplinary action against a senior NUJ official which would almost certainly have prompted a strike at the Birmingham Post & Mail.

Chris Morley has been NUJ Father of Chapel at the company for more than 10 of his 20 years’ service.

Trinity Mirror has made a series of redundancies at its Midlands titles this year which have been opposed by the NUJ. The union is also in dispute with the company over pay negotiations that have lasted all year.

The company attempted to discipline Morley on the grounds that an e-mail he had sent to members reporting a chapel meeting “may constitute an act of misconduct”.

On Monday, after three days of hearings, editor-in-chief Roger Borrell, who laid the charges against Morley, dropped the disciplinary action.

Morley, the Birmingham Evening Mail’s industrial correspondent, has received a reprimand but been told it will not appear on his file.

The NUJ defended Morley fiercely. General secretary Jeremy Dear said the charges against him were unfounded.

“This was a clear case of victimisation.” Morley said: “The support I have had from the chapel and all around the country is absolutely fantastic.”

The chapel had passed a resolution of “total support and confidence” in him and would have held a ballot for industrial action had he been sacked.

Trinity Mirror has axed eight senior jobs on The Birmingham Post.

Morley said the chapel had the written support of 17 Midlands MPs in its campaign against the redundancies.

By Andy Skinner

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