Thompson faces 'unprecedented' no confidence vote

NUJ members at the BBC are to vote on an ‘unprecedented’call of no confidence in director-general Mark Thompson.

The union said a meeting of NUJ reps at the corporation had unanimously agreed to hold the vote in response to the cuts announced last month.

BBC News is likely to bear the brunt of the 2,000 jobs earmarked for the chop after being ordered to reduce its budget by 16 per cent, leading to loss of up to 650 jobs in the department.

Last week the NUJ, BECTU and Unite unions announced plans to ballot BBC members over industrial action.

The NUJ yesterday claimed the BBC’s proposals ‘will cause irreparable damage to the best journalism in the world, dramatically impact on the reputation of the service internationally and will led to a devastating reduction in public service broadcasting across the UK’s regions and nations”.

In response the BBC said: ‘We remain committed to a constructive dialogue with the unions.”

NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said: ‘This shows the depth of anger felt by journalists across the BBC and their outrage at the lack of leadership from the top of the corporation.

‘The BBC’s future is under attack as a result of the freeze on the licence fee settlement driven through by the Coalition government.

‘The director general should be fighting for the BBC, not inflicting cuts in areas that will cause irreparable damage to services and inevitably compromise quality journalism and programming.

‘NUJ members are committed to defending jobs and quality journalism at the BBC and we are asking readers, listeners and viewers to join with us in this battle. And that is why we will be organising the no confidence ballot against Mark Thompson, the architect of this butchery.”

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