Shropshire Star journalists vote for strike ballot

Journalists at the Shropshire Star last night passed a unanimous vote to ballot for strike action after Midland News Association announced widespread compulsory redundancies.

An email sent from the Express & Star’s staff council to employees earlier this week revealed only 15 staff had come forward to take compulsory redundancy at the Star but the that the company was looking to axe 30 jobs.

It is not yet known how many of these will be editorial staff but six are already believed to have left the newspaper.

NUJ members at the title are demanding a guarantee there will be no compulsory editorial job losses.

NUJ Northern and Midlands organiser Chris Morley said: “Our members at Shropshire Newspapers are greatly concerned at the appalling prospect of compulsory redundancies.They also fear for the future of their titles and the communities they serve if the cuts go too deep.

“The journalists stand united in wanting to defend any NUJ member who may be faced with being ejected from their jobs, so we are now starting the process of balloting for strike action to allow for this option.”

He added: ‘Our members would rather be concentrating on putting their newspapers and web stories together than having to fight for their jobs. But the company should be warned that our members are in no mood to roll over and see people forced out the door. They have shown they are willing to stand up for jobs and journalism in the past and are ready to do the same again.

“Our members are galvanised to meet the challenge and I am confident we will have a strong vote to take action should it be required.”

MNA also owns the Wolverhampton Express and Star, where the company is seeking to cut 60 jobs. Only 26 have come forward for voulntary redundancy.

MNA was unavailable for comment.

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