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STV staff reject request from management to delay strike ballot over mass redundancies

STV staff remain “absolutely united” against plans to cut 34 news jobs after rejecting a management request to delay a strike ballot by two weeks.

Another 25 jobs will be lost with the closure of STV’s secondary TV channel STV2 at the end of June, taking the total number of roles lost to 59.

Union members met yesterday to decide whether to accept the request from management or press on with the ballot on industrial action over job losses.

In return, STV bosses had offered to extend both the consultation period and the deadline for voluntary redundancy applications by two weeks.

The period for voluntary redundancy ends on Thursday and the consultation period will end in mid-June.

Press Gazette understands members should begin receiving their ballot papers on Friday for a ten-day ballot.

National Union of Journalists’ Scotland organiser, John Toner, said: “Our members are absolutely united on this matter and will not rescind the ballot.

“We are almost two weeks into this process and most of our members are still waiting to find out whether they have jobs, and what those jobs would actually entail in this new structure for STV News.

“We look forward to more detailed answers to our questions in the coming week.”

Consultations between the NUJ and STV management continue.

STV chief executive Simon Pitts previously said: “We will work closely with our team through this change process, and we are confident we will able to maintain our hard-fought reputation as Scotland’s best, most comprehensive and most trusted source of news.”

Holyrood’s Culture Committee has called Pitts to give evidence relating to the job cuts at STV before Members of Scottish Parliament on 7 June, when the staff ballot will still be ongoing.

The committee is currently conducting an inquiry into Scotland’s TV and movie industry and how recommendations from an earlier report on strengthening and developing it can be implemented.

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