Software row could lead to strike at ITV

By Caitlin Pike

NUJ members across ITV are likely to be balloted for strike action
after management refused to negotiate over reward payments for
increased workloads caused by new editing technology.

NUJ national broadcasting representative Paul McLaughlin said: “We
have asked ITV to get around the table and sort these matters out, but
unfortunately the company has refused, which leaves our members no
option but to pursue the matter in a way they see fit.”

desktop editing software has been introduced in ITV regional newsrooms,
including Meridian and Tyne Tees, over the past 12 months.

The NUJ says this has led to a reduced number of ‘craft editors’ in newsrooms, meaning more work for reporters.

An ITV spokeswoman said: “We are still in discussions with the NUJ and have received no formal notification of a ballot.”

NUJ members who worked at the ITV News Channel have accepted an
improved financial package from ITN management, avoiding the need for
compulsory redundancies. When the channel was closed in December,
around 70 staff – mostly journalists – faced losing their jobs. A
combination of re-allocation of jobs, staff leaving of their own accord
and the financial package being offered means that only 17 journalists
face making a decision about their future. None of them will face
compulsory redundancy.

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