Canadian newspapers might be in decline, but they are still the largest source of journalism in this country.
Sault Star staff ratify deal with wage gains - Workers at The Sault Star have ratified a new collective agreement that gives them wage gains after many years of zero or minuscule increases. The 12 members of CWA Canada Local 30746, the Sault Ste. Marie Typographical Union, who work in editorial, advertising and reader sales and service, will receive a one-per-cent increase in each of the three years of the contract that runs until August 2024. In addition, said David Wilson, the CWA Canada staff representative who led the negotiations that wrapped up last Thursday, the top rate for editorial staff will be bumped up by $25 a week. This will bring them closer to parity with their unionized colleagues at two other Postmedia-owned newspapers, the Sudbury Star and North Bay Nugget. The workers, who held a ratification vote on Monday evening, also gain an additional paid day off (floater) and improvements in the mileage rate. All staff, who now work from home after the company closed the paper’s public office, will also receive a one-time payment of $300 to cover equipment costs. Wilson noted that, because the Local has a Cost of Living (COLA) clause in its contract, each member was paid $300 in August. The COLA is [...] Postmedia printing plant workers ratify first contract - The 71 workers at a Postmedia printing plant in Toronto have ratified a first contract that gives them major gains in wages and sick leave. The online vote on Saturday to approve the tentative three-year deal came 15 months after they were officially unionized and joined CWA Canada Local 30213, the Canadian Media Guild. The workers in the press room, reel room and distribution centre at the facility on Islington Avenue will see higher wages in various categories as well as receiving overall annual increases of 2.0, 3.2 and 3.8 per cent. They will go from receiving no paid sick leave to four weeks at full pay, then 22 weeks at 70 per cent of earnings for those with more than one year of service. CWA Canada staff representative David Wilson said there are other improvements including pension, statutory holiday pay and vacation entitlement. The rapid organizing drive at the Toronto plant was kickstarted last year when Postmedia imposed company-wide cuts early in the pandemic and didn’t take steps to ensure the safety of the essential workers at the printing operation. Michael Melo, who was involved in the organizing effort and was a member of the bargaining committee, said it [...] 4 of 5 federal parties commit to support news media, increase CBC funding - Four of the five parties in the federal election support a strong and stable media, with increased funding for the public broadcaster. A vague response by one national party, however, raises concerns about the future of CBC/Radio-Canada and the nationwide services it currently provides. In their answers to questions from the Canadian Media Guild (CWA Canada Local 30213), the NDP, the Liberals, the Bloc Québécois and the Green Party committed to improved funding for the CBC. The parties base their support on the unique role the national broadcaster has in Canada. The four also acknowledge the importance of supporting local news at a time when the media industry is in crisis, with each agreeing to extend some kind of temporary support for the industry, much like the 2019 federal government program. Only the Conservative Party of Canada differs on these points. While the party did not answer questions directly, it did provide the portion of its platform dealing with media, culture and broadcasting. It describes breaking up the CBC, with decreased support for some areas and increased support for others. In essence, the Conservatives’ proposals amount to cutting English-language television while focusing support on French-language services, especially in Quebec. “It is disappointing [...] Remote work brings privacy issues closer to home - NADINE ROBINSON It’s a normal day for Employee X. They message a source on a work laptop through their personal social media account (because there is no work account) and step away to use the washroom without logging out. The fluorescent tube lighting flickers and glints off a newly installed surveillance camera in the shared bullpen. There are rumours of bossware on company devices, that can turn on a camera and microphone without warning, and can track all activity on the device, and nearby devices. The protagonist goes home and logs into the VPN from their personal laptop to finish a couple of work emails. Subsequently, Employee X is fired for things that they had said and written. Devastated and confused, X grabs their personal phone to message a colleague to try and understand the extent of what the employer knows and how they know it. Their phone has been wiped; everything is gone, even the video of their baby’s first steps. X feels violated. Will they have to go to extreme measures to get their job and their digital life back? What about their privacy and their freedom? It may sound like a pitch for a new episode of [...] Striving for a world in which we don’t need International Women’s Day - CWA Canada commissioned the following opinion piece to mark International Women’s Day 2021 on March 8. SHARI GRAYDON I’d like to abolish International Women’s Day. Never mind the many opportunities it’s given me to command space on op-ed pages for issues I know and care about; I’m striving for a world in which everybody agrees that IWD is no longer necessary. In the meantime, designating a single 24-hour period to focus on the concerns and realities of fully half the population of the planet is about as insulting as making space for the voices of Black people only one month of the year. But as media workers, you can help address both these issues. Since 2010, the non-profit Informed Opinions has been working to amplify women’s voices in Canadian news media. Because for decades men’s perspectives have outnumbered women’s by a ratio of sometimes four or five to one. That’s a problem in a society that thinks of itself as a beacon of democracy. Representation is as fundamental to democratic decision-making as are free and open news media. It’s true that as long as men continue to dominate politics, business and sport, and news is significantly shaped by the pronouncements [...]
Link to the full Newspaper Industry news archive on CWA Canada
19.03.12 Marc Edge | J-Source – How to fix Canada’s biggest media problem in one easy step
19.03.08 J-Source – Changes come to one of Atlantic Canada’s largest media companies
19.03.07 J-Source – A fourth-generation newspaper rides the waves of change
19.02.08 CanadaLand – Postmedia’s deep ties with the company Jeff Bezos has accused of extortion
19.01.26 Slate – The Crisis Facing American Journalism Did Not Start With the Internet
18.12.31 The Atlantic – The media’s post-advertising future is also its past
18.12.19 Policy Options – Funding for Canadian media: The who, why and how
18.12.13 National Observer – Press council comes down on Toronto Sun for ‘serious breach’ after false report about goats
18.12.11 National Public Radio – Local newspaper closures come with hefty price tag for residents
18.12.10 Toronto Star – Journalism too important to go the way of the video store
18.12.06 Media in Canada – Postmedia reduces print schedule for Northern papers
18.12.05 J-Source – Can digital journalism serve readers who can’t get online?
18.12.04 The Tyee – More fuel for investigation into Torstar, Postmedia newspaper swap
18.12.02 The Conversation – Nonprofit news: Lessons from south of the border
18.11.28 Halifax Examiner – Postmedia CEO Paul Godfrey was paid $5 million in 2018, but says his company is so broke it needs public subsidies
18.11.23 National Post – Andrew Coyne: Liberals’ $600M aid package for news media will irrevocably politicize the press
18.11.23 The Globe and Mail – My small-town newspaper died a year ago. The community has been grieving ever since
18.03.11 Toronto Star – Serious journalism is vital to healthy democracy and requires support
18.03.04 John Longhurst – Turning Newspapers Into Charities: A New Model for the Future?