Tag Archives: Guardian US

Guardian US unit nominates negotiators for contract bargaining

The Guardian US union has nominated Ashley Chervinski, Amana Fontanella-Khan, Tim Hill and Amanda Holpuch to negotiate its contract renewal.

Amana and Amanda are returning to the table after negotiating the Guardian US’s first Guild contract, which was signed in October 2017.

Amana and Tim are co-presidents of the office’s union and Amanda is a member of the News Media Guild executive committee.

Tim and Ashley are sub-editors, also known as copy editors, on the production desk. Tim started at the Guardian’s London office before moving to New York in 2011, making him one of the US office’s longest serving employees. Ashley joined in 2018 and previously worked as a freelancer at various publications including Refinery29.

Amana is opinion editor for the Guardian’s US edition and has worked there for five  years. Amanda is a national correspondent and has worked in the New York office for eight years.

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Guardian-US staff unanimously approves 1st contract

Guardian-US staff voted unanimously to approve their first contract, which includes pay raises, paternity leave of 10 weeks for a birth or adoption and employer payment of the full cost of health insurance for a worker.

The editorial employees working in New York, Washington and San Francisco approved the contract last week. They voted unanimously in July 2015 to have the News Media Guild as their bargaining agent.

“I commend The Guardian for reaching a fair contract with our members that embraces its values,” said Amanda Holpuch, a Guardian Guild-covered staffer and member of the bargaining team. “We are proud to have been backed by an engaged, energetic staff who supported the negotiation team.”

Under the proposed contract, wages will increase 1.5 percent on Jan. 1, 2018, 1.75 percent on Jan. 1, 2019 and 2 percent on Jan. 1, 2020. However, if the cost of living exceeds those amounts, the increases will be adjusted to meet the actual cost of living.

The top-scale pay for general assignment reporters is now $65,000, which would increase to $68,400 in January 2020. The top scale pay for a section head and a senior reporter would move from $95,000 to $100,000.

The agreement contains job security terms requiring “just cause” for termination and that seniority will prevail in cases of staff reductions when an employee has the needed skills and ability to perform the job. Severance pay for staff reductions are based on length of service that range from no less than five weeks’ pay to no more than 50 weeks. For the first three months after the termination, the Company will make the same contribution to medical and dental insurance for any employee and dependent coverage the employee is enrolled in at the leave date.

Differences over the contract’s provisions are subject to a grievance procedure which includes the possible arbitration of disputes.

Employees’ annual vacation will be 25 days, which increases to 28 days after five years of service. Work on any of the 10 holidays will be paid at time and one-half in addition to the employee’s workweek.

Parental leave for maternity, adoption and paternity of 10 weeks at full pay will be granted upon request to employees who are expecting or give birth or are newly matched for the adoption of a child for which they will be a primary caregiver, provided they have one year or more of continuous service at the date the parental leave commences.

The Guardian will continue to pay the full premium for its employees’ health insurance. If the cost of the two-person and family plan members increase, the company will absorb the first 10 percent of the additional cost. The company will continue to contribute 4 percent to employees’ 401(k) accounts each pay period which new employees can enroll in after 60 days of service.

Training will be provided when employees are assigned to new posts, when they use new technology and when jobs are altered significantly. Refresher courses in those areas will be made available on a regular basis.

Overtime eligible employees are entitled to premium pay after forty hour of work a week while ineligible will receive compensatory time off. Sick days will be counted as time worked.

The agreement also includes terms for sick leave, transfers and promotions, non-discrimination, leaves of absences, expenses, the use of social media and a fair share representation fee.

Guardian-US copy editor returns to work after successful union challenge

The Guardian US union is delighted to announce a staff copy editor has returned to work after being unfairly terminated in May. 
 
The copy editor, Chris Taylor, says he’s grateful for the support from the News Media Guild.
 
“I want to thank the News Media Guild, as well as my colleagues both here and abroad, for their amazing support,” said Taylor who lost his job in May and returned Sept. 18. “I’m delighted to be back doing my job again.”
 
Over the course of six months during contract negotiations with the News Media Guild, the company announced two buyout periods in the U.S, operation to respond to a budget shortfall. 
 
The company negotiated the buyout terms with the union in both instances, but during the second round, the union claimed Taylor was terminated in violation of the interim job security agreement. This prompted the News Media Guild to file for arbitration. 
 
The staff in the U.S. as well as their National Union of Journalist colleagues in the U.K. and Australia worked together to convince the company to reinstate Taylor.
 
Arbitration was due to begin in December, but staff learned in August that the company decided to return Taylor to work after another copy editor left the job in July. Taylor is being treated as if he was on a paid leave of absence. The Guild and the company agreed that the resolution would not be referred to by either side as precedential. 
 
The News Media Guild reached a tentative agreement for a first contract with the company on Sept. 19, and a contract ratification vote will be conducted shortly.  
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And the Emmy goes to … the Guardian US interactive team

And the Emmy goes to … the Guardian US interactive team, which won the award for a four-part series about immigration, produced in partnership with The Texas Observer.

The team received the Emmy for new approaches in current news coverage. To learn more about the series, click here

In addition, Melissa del Bosque, a reporter with The Texas Observer, and the Guardian US interactive received a 2015 Online Journalism Award for a large online feature.

“Thank you so much for this award. We are incredibly honored and proud to win this award for telling the powerful story of lives impacted by the US immigration crisis,” said Lee Glendinning, the Guardian US editor in chief, when accepting the Emmy. “These are the stories of mothers who have lost their children and migrants struggling for a new life and the truth about those who are coping on the sidelines of the overwhelming border crisis. This project was such a great collaboration between the Texas Observer, the amazing reporting of Melissa del Bosque and the Guardian – our editors, our video team, our interactive team. It was fantastic collaboration with all of us.” 

And the Emmy goes to …

The Guardian US team behind the series includes Mae Ryan, Nadja Popovich, Kenan Davis, Kenton Powell, Rich Harris and Feilding Cage.

“To tell this story we needed to really push some of the boundaries of what was possible in digital story telling. Our use of 3D mapping and integrated satellite technology helped us establish a sense of place along with a layer of context on the Central American violence, migration roots through Mexico and the role of cartels and the role they play in human trafficking,” Glendinning continued.  

“So really we are so proud to win this for such an incredibly personal, heartbreaking and human tale that gives us so many different perspectives on the border crisis at the moment.”