Scarborough journalists to ballot on further action

Journalists employed by Johnston Press in Scarborough are set to ballot again on further industrial action as part of an ongoing dispute over working conditions.

Members of the National Union of Journalists at Yorkshire Regional Newspapers have already been out on strike over complaints about staff shortages and the introduction of the controversial Atex content management system.

Press Gazette understands that despite discussions over a likely settlement to the staffing dispute, local management have now been informed about the proposed new ballot.

Seeds of the Scarborough dispute were sown in March when six sub-editors working on the Scarborough Evening News and other local titles were told they must move to a new centralised subbing hub in Sheffield, 90 miles away, or else lose their jobs.

The unrest came as union chapels at other Johnston Press titles were battling with the company over similar staffing disputes and the introduction of Atex.

Journalists at chapels in Sheffield and Blackpool have already held industrial action.

The NUJ was forced to call off a planned group-wide strike over the introduction of Atex last month after a legal challenge from Johnston Press at the High Court.

The publishing group argued on a technicality that it did not employ journalists but that they are in fact employed by autonomous regional centres.

Johnston Press chapel heads met again over the weekend to discuss future widespread and coordinated action.

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