Nick Cohen close to settling New Statesman payment dispute

After almost a year, Observer columnist Nick Cohen is close to settling with the New Statesman over unpaid fees owed to him when he wrote for the title under former editor John Kampfner.

Cohen claims he resigned from his regular contributions to New Statesman in September last year as a result of payment issues and a falling out with Kampfner, who he says changed his contract.

He claimed he is still owed fees, which the NUJ was in the process of retrieving until the New Statesman made an offer this week. Cohen said his lawyer is happy with the offer and the two parties are now close to reaching a settlement.

Cohen, speaking to Press Gazette before the offer was made on Monday, said: ‘If Tony Blair or David Cameron behaved in this way, the New Statesman would be denouncing them in the most virulent terms. It’s meant to be a left-wing newspaper. It’s immensely hypocritical.”

NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear said the NUJ was seeking to build membership at the magazine and regain official recognition. He said the union was making progress at the magazine as staff have shown more interest.

‘We haven’t had NUJ recognition there for a number of years, but I believe we’re in the process of seeking a claim for recognition there, having recruited lots of new members there over the past few months.”

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